Our response to the latest PM press conference

Matthew Fell, CBI Chief UK Policy Director, noted the news will come as a real disappointment for some businesses, but highlighted firms know that public safety comes first. He added:

“Delayed reopening will unfortunately lead to even more financial pressure for some companies. So there may yet be a need for more direct support to shore up cash flow, including extended business rates relief.”

31 Jul 2020

Data reveals firms' concerns over non-negotiated EU exit and lack of preparedness as Brexit talks continue

Dame Carolyn Fairbrain, CBI Director-General, said that while many larger firms have long had plans in place for a no-deal outcome, smaller firms will struggle to cope with a double dose of disruption. She added:

“A deal that supports the UK’s world leading services firms and keeps UK exporters free from red tape, costs and new trade barriers is paramount as the UK takes its all-important steps towards recovery.”

31 Jul 2020

CBI Scotland responds to latest announcement on easing of lockdown restrictions

Tracy Black, CBI Scotland Director, noted that getting children safely back to school will help parents and carers get back to work and support the wellbeing of children. She added:

“Pushing back the date for the re-opening of non-essential offices to ‘no earlier than September 11’ creates confusion for many businesses. What firms need is a clear, indicative date that allows them to start planning now for a safe re-opening that puts the health of staff and customers first.”

30 Jul 2020

CBI Wales responds to £40m jobs and skills recovery package

Noting that the Welsh economy was already struggling before Covid-19, Ian Price, CBI Wales Director, highlighted every single bit of growth matters for jobs and livelihoods. He added:

“The announcement of a £40m jobs and skills recovery package is extremely welcome and shows the Welsh Government has listened to the concerns of local businesses."

28 Jul 2020

Retail sales stabilise but non-essential retailers continue to struggle - CBI

Rain Newton-Smith, CBI Chief Economist, noted that the crisis has created winners and losers within the retail sector and for some businesses the picture remains bleak. She said:

“The re-opening of non-essential retail was a vital step towards recovery but isn’t a cure-all. The Government has provided critical support for firms and jobs throughout the crisis. But ongoing financial pressures are a major challenge for some retailers, and additional direct support to shore up cash flow, such as extension of business rates relief, should be considered.”

28 Jul 2020

CBI Scotland responds to final Infrastructure Commission for Scotland report

Tracy Black, CBI Scotland Director, highlighted that an independent body to provide strategic infrastructure advice to government would help ensure a long-term approach to infrastructure investment, adding:

“The Commission is also right to highlight the importance of collaboration between the public sector and the construction industry. The journey to a well-connected, low carbon Scotland presents significant opportunities for people, business and the Scottish economy.”

27 Jul 2020

CBI NI responds to York Street Interchange external inquiry

Angela McGowan, CBI Northern Ireland Director, said:

“We welcome today’s announcement around this project, which is a vitally important infrastructure project for Northern Ireland. Effective delivery of strategic infrastructure like the York Street Interchange should be a key driver of our long-term economic recovery."

27 Jul 2020

Call for clarity on defining and applying social value in government contracts

Liz Crowhurst, CBI Head of Infrastructure and Public Sector Policy, said lack of consistency in government contracts hampers further progress in embedding social value more widely, adding:

“Ultimately, supporting public bodies deliver on national policy objectives, such as levelling up and reskilling through partnerships with suppliers requires renewed effort to effectively measure and apply social value. This report sets out some clear steps as to how this can be achieved."

24 Jul 2020

Scottish manufacturing output and orders fall at record pace

Tracy Black, CBI Scotland Director, said Covid-19 has taken its toll and too many companies and jobs are far from out of the woods. She added:

"Real collaboration between government and industry is needed to implement an ambitious economic recovery plan that prioritises jobs – especially for young people – and investment. The focus now needs to be on delivering an effective Scottish jobs guarantee scheme that helps firms create opportunities for young people, while also supporting their existing workforce.”

23 Jul 2020

Manufacturing activity declines sharply again but expectations point to gradual recovery - CBI

Rain Newton-Smith, CBI Chief Economist, noted manufacturers continue to face extreme hardship due to the COVID-19 crisis.

“The Government has provided vital support to protect manufacturing businesses and jobs throughout the crisis. But firms remain very concerned about their financial situation and their capacity to invest. It is crucial for the Government to consider how it can continue to support viable firms through this crisis.”

23 Jul 2020

No new conventional gas boilers in homes after 2025

CBI President and Heat Commission Chair, Lord Karan Bilimoria, highlighted green recovery and progress towards the UK’s net-zero emission target are doomed to fail if we don’t address the urgent need to decarbonise the heat in our homes and buildings. He added:

“Recent Government announcements will undoubtedly fast-forward our transition towards net-zero. The Commission’s recommendations offer a roadmap to accelerate progress, ensure our nation stays on a path to sustainable recovery and ensures the UK remains a global leader in meeting climate commitments."

22 Jul 2020

CBI responds to the PM's announcement of further lockdown easing

Josh Hardie, CBI Deputy-Director General, noted any plan for returning to work must ensure employees are safe. He added:

“Businesses have made monumental efforts to protect their workforce. But concern about infection is still high. The government’s announcements will not change that overnight, but changes in messaging on transport and further testing can lay a path to building confidence and helping those who want to come back to the office."

17 Jul 2020

CBI Scotland responds to latest labour market statistics

Tracy Black, CBI Scotland Director, noted unemployment in Scotland is outpacing the rest of the UK. She said:

“We know unemployment falls unevenly, across geographies and social groups. Business must work closely with government to ensure that everything is done to create new opportunities, especially for young people, in order to prevent a lost generation of Scots workers."

16 Jul 2020

CBI responds to latest labour market statistics

Matthew Percival, CBI Director for People and Skills, noted the figures reveal difficulties for thousands of people. He added:

“It will be vital for business and government to work together to successfully deliver the Kickstart Scheme simply and quickly in the autumn to support young people. There can be no time lost in preparing people for the most difficult jobs market in decades.”

16 Jul 2020

CBI responds to latest OBR analysis

Rain Newton-Smith, CBI Chief Economist, noted the latest OBR analysis reflects the scale of the economic harm caused by this pandemic.

“Economic recovery is the key to balancing the public finances over the longer term and the Autumn Budget is likely to be too early to make significant inroads through tax rises and public spending cuts. It will take several years for the UK economy to recover to pre-crisis levels and ensuring a jobs rich recovery must be the number one priority by supporting business to thrive.”

14 Jul 2020

CBI responds to latest GDP data

Alpesh Paleja, CBI Lead Economist, said that the latest data sheds further light on just how much the economy has been affected by lockdown. He added:

"The Chancellor’s Summer Statement was an important step forward, but many viable firms remain in danger as a result of reduced cash flow and a lack of consumer demand. The Government must continue to back a long-term, sustainable recovery while responding to the challenges companies are experiencing right now.”

14 Jul 2020

CBI responds to further guidance on the UK's new immigration system

Josh Hardie, CBI Deputy Director-General, addressed the ending of freedom of movement and the introduction of a new points-based immigration system, saying:

Today’s announcement has positives on attracting international students and the highest skilled workers. But it will struggle to reflect genuine needs in communities until it really values an individual’s contribution beyond just salary and avoids a false choice between hiring from overseas or investing in the existing workforce. Both are needed to drive the economy forward.

13 Jul 2020

CBI Wales responds to First Minister's statement on social distancing measures

Ian Price, CBI Wales Director, said:

“Easing social distancing rules will make a substantial difference to the viability of thousands of firms here in Wales. The move will have a material impact across tourism and hospitality who are desperate to get back on their feet. As these sectors prepare to re-open, the safety of their staff and customers must come first to maintain confidence."

10 Jul 2020

CBI responds to Education Secretary further education speech

Josh Hardie, CBI Deputy Director-General, noted renewed government support for further education is welcome by business. He added:

“These reforms must go hand-in-hand with support for our world-leading and highly-respected universities that are struggling so acutely in the face of coronavirus. The FE white paper is a golden opportunity to join up higher and technical education, drive inclusion and prosperity - delivering the high-skilled, high-paid jobs that communities need now and in the future.”

09 Jul 2020

CBI responds to the Chancellor's summer economic statement

Dame Carolyn Fairbairn, CBI Director-General, noted the Chancellor's jobs plan is an important step forward - but highlighted that many firms are in jeopardy.

“The Chancellor must continue to balance the need to invest in a long-term, sustainable recovery while responding to the urgent challenges that companies are experiencing today.”

08 Jul 2020

CBI responds to the Government's green jobs package

Rain Newton-Smith, CBI Chief Economist, said:

“Investment in green jobs and technology must be at the centre of our efforts to revive the economy. Help to create new, sustainable jobs for the future and improve energy efficiency will bring benefits to consumers and business customers alike across the UK."

06 Jul 2020

Business volumes fall at record pace in financial services - CBI/PwC

Rain Newton-Smith, CBI Chief Economist, said:

“Government intervention so far has saved countless jobs, yet anxious months for many still lie ahead. Alongside this, it’s important to recognise the central role the financial services sector has played in getting support to firms in need at speed, while dealing with absences and new ways of working."

07 Jul 2020

CBI Wales responds to job losses at Airbus

Ian Price, CBI Wales Director, noted this is an extremely sad day for individuals set to lose jobs, for a company that has made such an immense contribution to the local economy and for Wales’ aerospace sector. He added:

“While charting a sustainable post-pandemic recovery is vital, we can’t lose sight of the compelling need to protect jobs and firms now. Further wage support to protect jobs, a new jobs programme to create opportunities and more funding for skills and training are essential to protect livelihoods and reduce the scarring impact long-term unemployment would have on our communities.”

02 Jul 2020

CBI Scotland responds to latest announcement on social distancing

Tracy Black, CBI Scotland Director, said easing social distancing rules will make a substantial difference to the viability of thousands of firms in Scotland. he noted the move will also have a material impact across sectors such as leisure, tourism and hospitality and added:

“With the easing of restrictions taking place at different speeds across the UK, political leaders must work in partnership to minimise confusion and maximise collaboration. Meanwhile, planning must take place now for a sustainable and inclusive economic recovery.”

02 Jul 2020

CBI responds to the UK Government's R&D Roadmap

Felicity Burch, CBI Director of Digital and Innovation, welcomed the Roadmap but called for more answers to the question of delivering on the 2.4% R&D target. She added:

“For businesses, quick wins that government can look to implement rapidly include increasing funding for Innovate UK, establishing new mechanisms to support business uptake of new technologies and strengthening the purpose of the Catapults by creating innovation zones or Catapult Quarters.”

01 Jul 2020

CBI responds to PM speech on economic recovery

Dame Carolyn Fairbairn, CBI Director-General, noted that the Prime Minister’s commitment to upgrade and decarbonise our transport infrastructure, in all UK regions and nations, lays strong foundations. She added:

“Upgrading and building new English schools, prisons and hospitals will mobilise the construction industry supporting millions of workers and job opportunities. And cutting red tape should help prioritise the building of widely available, truly affordable homes. Together with commitments on R&D and innovation, these are the first steps on the path to recovery."

30 Jun 2020

‘Don’t forget the economy’ says CBI ahead of quarantine review

Ahead of the government’s first review of its 14-day quarantine for international arrivals to the UK, the CBI urged the Government to ensure that the needs of business are considered. Matthew Fell, CBI Chief Policy Director, said:

“The travel sector has been disproportionately affected by the crisis. But right across the economy – from engineers to deal-makers – firms are chomping at the bit to restart service contracts and begin to win business for the UK in overseas markets again.”

28 Jun 2020

Jobs and training must be top priority for economic recovery in Wales – CBI urges Welsh First Minister

Dame Carolyn Fairbairn, CBI Director-General and Ian Price, the CBI’s Wales Director, wrote to First Minister Mark Drakeford. They urged him to put jobs and training, especially for young people, at the heart of economic recovery plans. Ian Price said:

“While we live with the virus, any recovery plan must continue to prioritise health as well as the impact on the economy. Urgent interventions are required to create jobs, especially for young people, and investment."

26 Jun 2020

CBI NI responds to the Executive's statement on social distancing measures

Angela McGowan, CBI Northern Ireland Director, noted easing social distancing rules will make a substantial difference to the viability of thousands of firms here in Northern Ireland. She added:

“In the coming weeks business will be looking for the Northern Ireland Executive to accelerate efforts to protect jobs, livelihoods and future prosperity.”

25 Jun 2020

Get ahead of the economic curve with the next wave of support

Through a series of fiscal proposals, the CBI is urging the Government to accelerate efforts to protect jobs and livelihoods. Highlighting the importance of the proposed measures, Dame Carolyn Fairbairn, CBI Director-General, said:

“The Government has already shown its ability to be bold and decisive. By getting ahead of this tidal wave of economic damage with at scale, at speed, targeted support, it can help businesses survive, protecting the jobs and life chances of a generation.”

25 Jun 2020

CBI responds to Committee on Climate Change Progress report

Responding to the report, Rain Newton-Smith, CBI Chief Economist, noted the CBI agrees progress to decarbonise power needs to be coupled with government-led strategies on energy efficiency, decarbonising transport and sustainable manufacturing and industrial processes. She added:

"The CBI continues to champion the UK’s 2050 net-zero target and the need to accelerate progress towards ending our contribution to climate change."

25 Jun 2020

CBI Scotland responds to announcement of lock-down easing measures

Tracy Black, CBI Scotland Director, said:

"The publication of an indicative timetable for the re-opening of hospitality, leisure, and tourism businesses is hugely welcome and gives firms the opportunity to plan for reopening – while protecting staff and customers. While public health rightly remains the priority, the need for action to protect jobs and livelihoods remains urgent.”

24 Jun 2020

CBI responds to the Prime Minister's statement on social distancing rules

Responding to the statement from the Prime Minister, CBI Director-General Dame Carolyn Fairbairn noted easing social distancing rules will make a material difference to the viability of thousands of firms. She added:

“As hospitality and cultural sectors prepare to re-open, the safety of their staff and customers must come first to maintain confidence. Firms will be keen to closely examine the guidance that will be critical for success. With easing restrictions taking place at different speeds across the UK, political leaders must work in partnership to minimise confusion and maximise collaboration."

23 Jun 2020

CBI Scotland responds to announcement of move to lockdown phase two

Tracy Black, CBI Scotland Director, noted that progressing to phase two of the Scottish Government's restart plan is a welcome step. She added:

“While public health rightly remains the priority, the need for action to protect jobs and livelihoods is urgent. With the latest GDP figures making for difficult reading, and redundancies likely to rise as government support winds down, the speed and joined-up nature of our response is critical to Scotland’s economic recovery.”

18 Jun 2020

CBI responds to the latest labour market statistics

Matthew Percival, CBI Director of People and Skills, noted that over 600,000 people were taken off payroll between March and May and that vacancies fell by the largest amount on record on the quarter. He added:

“Unemployment falls unevenly across society and leaves scars that last generations. The urgent priority must be creating inclusive jobs today, by turbo charging the sustainable industries of tomorrow. This should be backed by a revolution in retraining, with business, government and education providers stepping up to reskill communities for the future.”

16 Jun 2020

CBI responds to UK Government border planning announcement

Josh Hardie, CBI Deputy Director-General, noted that introducing unilateral easements at the border for a short period in the event of no deal is sensible and pragmatic. He added:

“Both sides know that post COVID recovery will be hugely damaged without an ambitious deal. So news of greater political engagement between negotiators starting next week will also raise hopes that the deadlock can be broken."

12 Jun 2020

CBI: Prioritise jobs and training for the young to drive UK-wide recovery

As the UK gets back to work safely, unemployment is the biggest threat to livelihoods. The CBI has laid out an ambitious health-first recovery plan that would help secure a jobs-rich, fair and sustainable future for the UK economy. In a letter to the Prime Minister, CBI Director-General Carolyn Fairbairn said:

“Time is of the essence. Smart, fast policy is needed now to accelerate the process to minimise the human cost and in particular protect the futures of our young people. Together with our members and in consultation with the unions, the CBI has developed simple, implementable proposals that can be acted on now to create the best possible recovery.”

11 Jun 2020

CBI welcomes post-COVID-19 'roadmap to recovery'

The Construction Leadership Council (CLC) published a three-stage plan to help the industry recover from the Covid-19 downturn. Responding to the news, CBI Chief UK Policy Director Matthew Fell said:

“Investing in long-term project pipelines, improving procurement in the public and private sectors, and committing to collaborate rather than litigate, can all help the sector step up at this time of need."

01 Jun 2020

CBI responds to changes to Government support schemes

Dame Carolyn Fairbairn, CBI Director-General, noted that introducing part-time furloughing as more stores and factories start to open will help employees to return to work gradually and safely. She added:

“Firms understand the scheme must close to new entrants at some point and that those using it in future will need to make a contribution to help manage the costs. However, previously viable firms not able to open until later, particularly in leisure, hospitality and the creative industries, may need further assistance in the coming months.”

29 May 2020

CBI responds to the latest CBILS and BBLS finance figures

Rain Newton-Smith, CBI Chief Economist, said:

“As lenders continue to do all they can, it is critical that they along with the Government keep on working with industry to fine-tune the scheme. Some high-growth and larger firms eligible for these schemes are struggling to access help due to Europe-wide state aid rules not designed for these unprecedented times. Many of these firms are the backbone of regional economies, they urgently need support to tide them over."

27 May 2020

CBI responds to Government investment in UK transport

Responding to the £283 million investment, Tom Thackray, CBI Director of Infrastructure, said that it would ensure people can go back to work safely. He added:

“The boost in spending on buses and trams will also bolster key regional routes which are the lifeblood of communities and key workers. And in the long term, this is a crucial step in delivering on the Government’s ambitions of levelling up the country.”

23 May 2020

CBI responds to quarantine plans for arrivals

Noting that the UK must take a health first approach, CBI Chief UK Policy Director Matthew Fell said:

“Businesses are keen to work with government on a robust, internationally-coordinated plan to get passengers flying safely as soon as possible, including through innovative solutions such as the establishment of Air Bridges."

22 May 2020

CBI Scotland responds to Scottish Government's lockdown exit route map

The four phases outlined provide Scottish businesses a sense of optimism for the future. CBI Scotland Director, Tracy Black, said:

"Businesses across Scotland will welcome the publication of a route map for economic restart that puts safety first. Unless people feel safe, employees won't return to work, customers will stay away and the restart will falter, putting people’s livelihoods at further risk."

21 May 2020

CBI responds to the UK Government's new Global Tariff regime

The new tariff scheme will provide businesses with much needed clarity on post-Brexit trade, said CBI Deputy Director General Josh Hardie. He added:

"Simplifying the system, scrapping tariffs under 2%, reducing duties on sustainable products are all things firms can work with. Sticking closely to many existing tariff levels will give other countries incentive to agree trade deals with the UK. However, businesses will need time to assess the detail and ensuring there’s a system in place to address issues as they arise will be critical."

19 May 2020

CBI Northern Ireland responds to extension of COVID-19 business rates relief

Angela McGowan, CBI Northern Ireland Director, welcomed the extension saying:

"A one-month extension of the rates holiday for all businesses is very much welcome as companies try to keep costs down. The further extension to 12 months for some of the most impacted sectors by COVID-19 will also be very well received."

19 May 2020

CBI responds to rise in maximum loans available via CLBILS

Responding to maximum loans available via CLBILs rising from £50 million to £200 million, Chief Economist Rain Newton-Smith said:

"Some mid-cap businesses urgently need access to larger loans to tide them over at this critical juncture for the economy. Many of them are important regional employers, so the Treasury’s extension of maximum loans to £200m shows just how much they are listening to the concerns of business right now."

19 May 2020

CBI responds to ONS labour market statistics

With the data revealing sharp falls in vacancies and hours worked, as well as a smaller decline in employment, Matthew Fell, CBI Chief UK Policy Director, said:

"Looking ahead, how the job retention scheme evolves in line with restarting the economy will have a big impact on jobs and earnings. Extending it until October was a bold decision, giving businesses and workers medium-term security. Now, greater flexibility is needed to help businesses slowly bring people back to work where it is safe to do so."

19 May 2020

CBI Wales responds to Welsh Government's 'Unlocking our Society and Economy' paper

Responding to the Welsh Government's 'Unlocking our Society and Economy' paper, CBI Wales Director Ian Price said:

"This latest announcement provides a helpful guide to the way Wales will exit lockdown and prepare for a ‘new normal’. The emphasis on health and safety is welcome, as is the promotion of a joined-up approach that includes business, schools, transport and other key aspects of life in Wales."

15 May 2020

CBI responds to the latest UK GDP figures

As the economy wanes due to coronavirus regulations, recent data suggests the full impact of lockdown is still yet to come. Chief Economist, Rain Newton-Smith said:

“Reopening our economy will be a gradual, complex process. The Government’s new guidance has helped, giving businesses some flexibility for their individual circumstances. Ultimately, keeping health at the heart of a recovery plan will be key to sustaining an economic revival.”

13 May 2020

CBI responds to Prime Minister's address on COVID-19 and economic restart

As Boris Johnson set out the conditional return to a social and economic 'normal', Carolyn Fairbairn responded, saying:

“Today marks the first glimmer of light for our faltering economy. A phased and careful return to work is the only way to protect jobs and pay for future public services. The Prime Minister has set out the first steps for how this can happen. Businesses are keen to open and get our economy back on its feet. But they also know putting health first is the only sustainable route to economic recovery."

10 May 2020

CBI responds to Bank of England Monetary Policy report and Interim Financial Stability report

On the reports, CBI Chief Economist, said:

“The latest scenario suggests the UK will experience a significant economic contraction, followed by recovery as social distancing measures are lifted. As thoughts move to restarting the economy safely and effectively, the focus must remain on quickly getting cash to those that need it most and ensuring we rebuild an innovative, sustainable economy. The bounce back loans, the CBILs and the Bank of England’s CCFF scheme are all important building blocks."

07 May 2020

CBI responds to latest CBILS finance figures

With vital funds going out to firms in need and unhindered by minimal administration, CBI Chief Economist, Rain Newton-Smith said:

"This scheme has been a lifeline for many. For smaller firms, the 100% guaranteed loan should help give sole traders, micro firms and entrepreneurs a simple route to fast finance to help them stay afloat from next week."

30 Apr 2020

CBI responds to government support for ‘lifeline’ transport

Commenting on the news that vital routes for supplies and people have been protected through a coronavirus support package to keep the flow of goods and services running smoothly, CBI Director of Infrastructure, Tom Thackray said:

"The government’s decision to stand behind the main operators in the roll-on-roll-off ferry sector and Eurotunnel at this difficult time acknowledges the vital role these services play ensuring essential goods reach the UK and the island of Ireland. These routes are the lifeblood of local economies so this support is very welcome in communities throughout the UK."

24 Apr 2020

CBI responds to extension of Job Retention Scheme

The CBI has responded to the Chancellor's extension of the Jobs Retention Scheme beyond May.

“The Chancellor’s welcome extension of the Job Retention Scheme beyond the end of May will help protect the economy and prevent unnecessary job losses through this new lockdown phase. “This extension means that firms will no longer be forced to issue redundancy notices over the next few to days to comply with 45-day consultation requirements, and can instead return to focusing on protecting jobs and their businesses’."

17 Apr 2020

CBI responds to the latest economic analysis from OBR and IMF

The CBI has responded to the Office for Budget Responsibility coronavirus scenario that shows the possible effects on the economy of a 3-month shutdown. As well as the International Monetary Fund’s global economic forecast expecting a 3% contraction in global growth.

“This makes for bleak reading and stresses the need for the right policies to support our economy through this crisis. The need for coordinated global action to rebuild confidence has rarely been greater."

14 Apr 2020

On the PPE challenge

CBI Northern Ireland has urged businesses to join the ‘battle’ to produce protective equipment for the NHS and front-line workers. CBI NI Director, Angela McGowan said:

"Protecting NHS and social care staff on the frontline is vitally important. But it’s not just them; from people carrying out essential work in food manufacture or Post Offices and delivery drivers, key workers need protective gear and we are committed to helping secure it for them."

09 Apr 2020

On the new Labour leader

Sir Keir Starmer is the new leader of the opposition and the CBI warmly welcomes his appointment. Director General, Carolyn Fairbairn added:

"He has our full support to help develop policies that create and share prosperity across the UK. This is a time like no other for Labour and business to work in partnership to help our country survive the immense challenge of this pandemic, and move beyond it to revive our economy and tackle inequality."

04 Apr 2020

On additional government financial support for business

The Chancellor announced the government will help deliver cash faster to firms battling for survival in the headwinds of the pandemic. Dame Carolyn Fairbairn added:

“By providing more support for mid-tier companies, they are backing our most significant and iconic regional employers. These firms number in the thousands and make a huge contribution to the economy, so it’s good to see them getting the support they deserve."

02 Apr 2020

On the new self-employment support

CBI Director-General Carolyn Fairbairn has welcomed the support provided for the self-employed and called for fast clarity on how and when money will reach bank accounts to help individuals to plan. She added:

"The self-employed make an immense contribution to our society and across many industries. They will play a critical role in the UK’s recovery once we overcome the worst of the virus."

26 Mar 2020

On social distancing measures

As the government steps up precautions to deal with the coronavirus pandemic, CBI Northern Ireland Director, Angela McGowan said:

"Businesses are trying to do the right thing. Many firms in critical sectors have implemented huge changes in the workforce to keep their employees safe, while simultaneously ensuring that essential products and services keep flowing."

25 Mar 2020

On government's key worker list

Reacting to the coronavirus outbreak, the UK government has outlined which jobs are essential to help businesses plan ahead. In response to this, Chief UK Policy Director, Matthew Fell said:

"Defining which workers are critical to the national effort is a difficult task. Today’s list will help business and individuals to plan. But the need for different jobs will change in the weeks ahead, so the list must be kept under constant review with additions where necessary."

20 Mar 2020

CBI responds to the Spring Budget

CBI Director-General Carolyn Fairbairn has welcomed measures announced in the Chancellor's first Budget, saying:

“Overall, today’s budget is a powerful signal to firms at home and abroad that the UK can and will manage the immediate challenges and long-term opportunities in parallel.”

11 Mar 2020

On the lowering of interest rates by the Bank of England

Measures to help the flow of credit and support businesses potentially facing cash flow issues could make a real difference in the weeks ahead, said Rain Newton-Smith, CBI Chief Economist. She added:

"All eyes are now on the Chancellor today to do his part. This is a timely, proportionate response to a serious situation, though it's vital policy is kept under review as things improve."

11 Mar 2020

CBI responds to the Prime Minister's announcement on sick pay

Clarity about employers’ responsibilities is important in this unprecedented situation. It is vital that sick pay rules don’t encourage people to ignore public health guidance, said CBI Deputy Director-General Josh Hardie. He added:

"The CBI is providing insight to Government on other steps that businesses can take to make it as easy as possible to follow public health guidance, and what government can to do ensure businesses are always able to do the right thing."

04 Mar 2020

CBI responds to proposals to lift block on onshore wind competing in CfD auctions

CBI Head of Energy and Climate Change James Diggle has welcomed proposals to lift of the block on onshore wind competing in Change for Difference (CfD) auctions. He added:

“This is an important move that will not only make the UK’s journey to net-zero more achievable, but also more affordable for consumers by using the cheapest available technologies that can deliver real benefits to the wider economy.”

02 Mar 2020

CBI responds to UK-US trade negotiation objectives

The UK is beginning a brand-new chapter in its global future, and a good trade deal with the US is a vital part of that story, said CBI Director-General Carolyn Fairbairn. She added:

“The US and UK already share the world’s largest bilateral investment relationship; now is the time to use it as a springboard for new jobs and investment here at home.”

01 Mar 2020

On the Government's negotiating mandate

Business recognises the sense of purpose and direction of the Government said CBI Director-General Carolyn Fairbairn. She added:

“Firms understand that this is just the beginning of months of complex talks. The most challenging areas will require flexibility from both sides to find a breakthrough."

27 Feb 2020

On the Court of Appeal ruling on Heathrow expansion

All major projects must be consistent with net zero and it’s clear that the Government and aviation industry need to work closely to agree a robust decarbonisation plan. Deputy Director-General Josh Hardie added:

"This decision risks holding back the very investment in innovation needed to achieve that, and the ambitions of many businesses eager to benefit from greater international connectivity."

27 Feb 2020



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