With the Conservative Party Conference in Birmingham underway, the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) is today (Monday) urging the Prime Minister and the Chancellor to listen to the priorities of Conservative back-benchers ahead of this month’s Comprehensive Spending Review

Back-benchers surveyed by the business group believe that the Government needs to do more to support exporters and international trade, while stripping back some of the red tape that prevents businesses from creating jobs. The survey revealed that: 

·         88% of Conservative MPs surveyed agree with the statement that a short-term freeze on new employment regulations would aid job creation and economic recovery

·         87% believe the balance of employment law has shifted too far towards the employee, to the detriment of the employer

·         83% agree that there should be a limit to the number of employment law changes happening at one time

·         93% of believe exports and trade promotion should be a high priority for Government

·         61% believed that the Government needed to boost – not cut – resources for supporting British companies to export more goods and services Additionally, 71% of the Conservative MPs surveyed felt that infrastructure funding should suffer less severe cuts than other departments (44%), no cuts (24%), or even that it should be boosted (3%).

Commenting, David Frost, Director General of the British Chambers of Commerce, said: “The BCC has been clear that a sustainable recovery depends on support for exporting companies, continuing investment in our creaking infrastructure, and a fundamental re-evaluation of the regulatory burden businesses face. 

“It is encouraging to note that large majorities of the MPs attending Conservative Party Conference in Birmingham this week share businesses’ concerns about the need to nurture exports and avoid large amounts of new employment regulation in the months ahead. 

“While business is under no illusion about the depth of the cuts required to improve our public finances and economic confidence, our message to Cameron and Osborne is clear: invest in economy-boosting exports and infrastructure, even if it means less spending on political priorities like health and overseas aid.”