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British Chambers Conference Attracts Budget Debate April 28, 2009

Posted by liverpoolchamber in British Chambers of Commerce, News, Policy.
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British Chambers of Commerce

Last week’s budget was top of the agenda at the British Chambers of Commerce’s annual convention held yesterday, 27 April 2009, as business leaders and politicians debated the best ways to find the ‘road to recovery’ for the economy.

The conference, held at the International Convention Centre (ICC) Birmingham, was opened by British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) president, Neville Reyner and BCC chairman David Frost. Birmingham City Council leader Mike Whitby also welcomed the conference to the city.

The scene was set by David Frost as he outlined how the government could do more to support business and free up stifling regulation, legislation and taxation.

Business minister Shriti Vadera, then responded to the BCC’s concerns and suggested ways in which the latest budget, announced by Alistair Darling last week, will extend to support businesses.

Baroness Vadera was then rebutted in a speech from the shadow business secretary, Kenneth Clarke, who suggested that the Conservatives will offer businesses greater levels of support if they come in to power at the next general election.

A panel discussion was also held with the assembled politicians and business leaders, where questions came from conference delegates on topical issues such as gender pay audits, empty property rates and car parking tax.

The Liverpool Chamber of Commerce was at the conference to forward members’ concerns to policy makers at the BCC, and to pool opinion with other chambers from across the country.

The issue of car parking tax was particularly focused upon by the BCC, who are currently collecting signatures for an online petition. Chambers from around the country united to voice there concerns to the panel of politicians and business leaders, in an effort to stop the work place parking levy (WPL) coming into effect across the country.

Chairman of the BCC David Frost commented:

“The British Chambers of Commerce and its accredited network have a real voice in government. If there was ever an example of this, it would be after our quarter 3 quarterly economic survey directly influenced the 1.5% cut in interest rates last November. And we can do a great deal more again.”

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