Business West urges new Labour government to invest in region so it can meet its full economic potential

July 5, 2024

The organisation behind Bath Chamber of Commerce has called on the newly elected government to ensure the West of England’s potential is fully harnessed, including investing in its growth sectors such as green energy.

Business West welcomed Labour’s commitment to an “enduring partnership” with business to deliver the economic growth and stability that the region needed. 

Its managing director Phil Smith, pictured, also said the organisation looked forward to working with the region’s newly elected MPs to make it the best place to live, learn and work.

“We also welcome the commitment to involving industry, trade unions and civil society in its plans for growth so we can contribute to building a stronger economy in all parts of the country,” he added.

Business West issued a 10-point plan for the long-term prosperity of the West of England in the run-up to polling day in which it bemoaned a lack of government investment in skills in the region and dealing with its core issues, such as transportation and housing.

Also included among its priorities were international trade, devolution, innovation and net zero.

Mr Smith said: “Our region has a vital role to play in driving UK productivity, increasing international trade and powering sustainable and inclusive growth.

“To do this, business needs the right environment to provide good, well-paid jobs and deliver the investment that will help fund decent public services and improvements to living standards and infrastructure.

“Our region has great economic strengths, and we ask that this potential is fully harnessed. We need ambitious plans to tackle our longstanding challenges to help kickstart economic growth.”

He said Business West wanted to see initiatives that helped people gain the skills and support that contribute to growing the economy.

“We also need investment in our emerging and growth sectors like green energy, alongside investing in the building blocks of the local economy that allow our businesses and staff to thrive.,” he added.

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