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BCC’s Budget Submission calls on Government for bold action to deliver economic confidence and investment

We welcome and support the British Chambers of Commerce’s (BCC) Budget Submission and the proposals it recommends to the Chancellor on behalf of national interests and the concerns of our own local business community.

The submission urges Government to take bold action, first and foremost on the upfront costs of doing business. Representing concern from across the business sector the BCC highlights that, without intervention, business rates will rise in line with the recent inflation increase of 3.9%. It further calls for a halt to the uprating of business rates for the next two years, for a pledge not to introduce any more input taxes and a removal of plant and machinery from business rates valuations.

The BCC paper also recommends a temporary increase to the Annual Investment Allowance to incentivise business investment during the Brexit process, as well as a focus on infrastructure investment to fix the fundamentals vital to our economic future. Perhaps most pertinently for our area are the calls to bring forward investment in the road network.

Many of these issues were highlighted in the comprehensive reaction Northamptonshire Chamber and the British Chambers of Commerce published following the Spring Budget, and were raised by Corby & East Northamptonshire MP Tom Pursglove in his question for the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy in parliament last week. The response from the Secretary of State, the Rt Hon. Greg Clark, identified that support for harnessing international investment is available from the Government’s industrial strategy, through public investment in research and development. Part of the role of the Chamber is to connect businesses with the information they need for growth, particularly regarding the policies introduced by government to support the market. Businesses are encouraged to contact the Chamber to access this advice and support and, in the words of the Secretary of State himself, to ensure that “through the BCC your voice is heard loud and clear in Government.”

As with all our representation publications this document was compiled through direct consultation with members and steered by the information we, at Northamptonshire Chamber of Commerce, gathered in the Quarterly Economic Survey. This regular health check of our members’ performance is vital for government, its department and agencies to measure the state of business sentiment. Representing your views to decision-makers is essential to ensuring that the domestic economy is in the best possible position to kickstart a productivity surge and that government policy supports businesses to deal with the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead with Brexit.

For more information on how we represent our members’ views to key decision-makers and to join your voice to influence our work, please email policy@northants-chamber.co.uk

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