On Wednesday, 4th February Leeds Chamber had the pleasure of hosting Treasury Minister, David Gauke. David was in the region to hear from local businesses about the challenges they faced and to discuss with them what they thought the Government could do to facilitate growth. The day started with a meeting with Chamber directors who provided an overview of the economic landscape across the region followed by a roundtable discussion with a small group of SME businesses.
We had deep discussion about a range of issues including the challenges smaller businesses face accessing public procurement opportunities, which remains a source of frustration for companies despite efforts to make it easier. Members also discussed apprenticeship funding in detail and shared concerns that planned reforms might hinder future uptake from small companies. The subject of tax allowances was raised and the Minister was keen to hear from members about the success, or otherwise of initiatives which had been introduced.
The Chamber also took the opportunity to raise views about devolution, infrastructure investment and skills funding more broadly and presented the minister with our latest policy paper on the subject (which can be found here)
The Minister spent a significant amount of time with the Chamber and it was a great opportunity for members to raise their views directly with this most important of government departments.
The Chamber will be responding formally, if you have views on any of the following then please contact the Chamber:
- Public procurement
- Tax policy / allowances
- Apprenticeship funding
- Incentives for small / micro businesses to aid graduate recruitment