Cameron to unveil jobs strategy to British business chiefs

25th October 2010, Comments 0 comments

British Prime Minister David Cameron was set Monday to lay out his "strategy for growth" to help replace jobs axed in last week's savage public spending cuts, in a key speech to business leaders here.

The premier was due to address the annual conference of the Confederation of British Industry (CBI), a powerful business lobbying group which is the country's biggest employers' organisation.

This year's event is framed by last week's comprehensive spending review, in which the government announced plans to cut almost half a million jobs, slashed budgets and imposed welfare cuts as it sought to curb an enormous deficit.

Conservative leader Cameron was to argue on Monday that his coalition government, which shares power with the Liberal Democrats, will seek a "new economic dynamism" to encourage new jobs in the private sector.

"Today, I want to set out what our strategy for growth will mean for Britain," he would tell delegates, according to an advance copy of his speech.

"I want to tell you how we can create a new economic dynamism in our country -- so we can build real confidence in our future."

"To build that new dynamism in our economy, to create the growth, jobs and opportunities Britain needs, we've got to back the big businesses of tomorrow, not just the big businesses of today," he was to say.

"That means opening up access to finance, creating an attractive environment for venture capital funding, getting banks lending to small businesses again -- and in the days and months ahead we will be setting out our plans in all these areas."

Delegates were also to be addressed by Ed Miliband, the leader of the opposition Labour party, who would argue that the spending cuts could harm Britain's recovery after it escaped from a long recession in late 2009.

The newly-appointed Labour leader was to appeal for improved regulation of the financial sector -- and financial help for cash-strapped companies.

Cameron would meanwhile announce a 200-million-pound (310-million-dollar, 225-million-euro) network of so-called technology innovation centres, that aim to link up British businesses with researchers at major universities.

The CBI, which represents around 240,000 British companies, will also be addressed by Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg and Business Secretary Vince Cable, who are the top two Liberal Democrat members of the government.

Other key speakers will include Barclays bank boss Bob Diamond and Bob Dudley, who took over as BP chief earlier this month after his predecessor Tony Hayward was forced out over the devastating Gulf of Mexico oil spill.

Meanwhile on Monday, the CBI called for the government to make Britain a more attractive place for foreign investment, citing a survey of 121 senior business leaders.

Britain must adapt and improve regulation, taxation, planning and infrastructure in order to win more business investment in the face of fierce competition from abroad, according to the grouping.

© 2010 AFP

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