Business launches election manifesto

NIGEL BOURNE: "The business vote is up for grabs and must to be fought for"
NIGEL BOURNE: "The business vote is up for grabs and must to be fought for"

THE CBI has set out its own 'manifesto' for the forthcoming General Election and called upon politicians to listen to the voice of business if they want their votes.

Setting out the priorities in its 'Business Agenda', the CBI has warned that no party will have the money needed for its five-year spending plans unless the role of the business community is recognised and supported.

The employers' organisation has laid out the issues on which companies will judge the parties' programmes, saying they will be looking for concrete, credible plans that will actually deliver improvements on the ground.

Tackling the issues of transport and skills and training were top of the CBI’s list of priorities, identified by its members as having the greatest influence on competitiveness and on which there is widespread dissatisfaction on progress so far.

Nigel Bourne, CBI's South East regional director, said: "The business vote is up for grabs and must to be fought for. Each political party should pursue a pro-growth, pro-jobs, pro-business agenda."

The employers' organisation has called on the next Government to reverse past decades of failure by committing at least £300bn of public and private investment to UK transport over the next 10 years.

The Business Agenda calls upon the political parties to put forward detailed plans on how to tackle the transport issue, arguing that the current system is holding back business, communities and hindering the UK’s ability to attract overseas investment.

On the issue of skills and training, a recent CBI survey showed that 92 per cent of firms believe it is a key factor in their performance, and 73 per cent of the people surveyed were unhappy with the education system.

The CBI wants the next government to raise the standards of English and Maths among 16-year-olds and to invest in improving the basic skills of 15 million adults.

The latest CBI research revealed that a third of companies are forced to give school leavers remedial training to compensate for shortcomings in the state education system.

Mr Bourne said: "The UK will not be able to compete in the global economy unless we have well-educated and motivated employees.

"The focus must be on improving the basic skills of school leavers and achieving dramatic progress in both literacy and numeracy."

The Business Agenda also calls for 2.5 per cent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) to be spent on research and development by 2014, and a reduction on business tax, which the organisation describes as a burden.

Close This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.Learn More