Brexit and Beyond
The South & Mid Wales Chambers of Commerce have teamed up with other Chambers of Commerce from across the UK to launch ‘Brexit and Beyond’, our manifesto for the General Election 2017.
The manifesto is the conclusions of conversations with Chamber members here in Wales and across the UK.
We are calling for the new government, which will be responsible for negotiating the terms of the UK’s departure from the European Union, to provide business communities with clear answers to the pragmatic and practical questions around how Brexit will affect their day-to-day operations, including hiring, customs procedures and regulation.
However, business communities across Wales have sent a very strong message that the election cannot – and must not – be about Brexit alone.
The next government must deliver a bold and clear strategy to support economic growth for Wales and the whole of the UK. Action is needed on a range of domestic fronts, including improving the competitiveness of the UK’s business environment, upgrading physical and digital infrastructure across, and supporting local growth.
South & Mid Wales Chambers of Commerce members will judge the next government against five key criteria:
- Business Environment – deliver a globally competitive business environment. Ensure the best business environment possible with a relentless drive to improve the skills set of tomorrow’s workforce, and not clobbering firms with ever-higher upfront costs.
- Local Growth – unlock the potential of local business communities. Deliver clarity on future devolution deals, develop a new fair post-Brexit funding system for the nations and regions of the UK and maintain the place-based focus of the Industrial Strategy to ensure growth across the whole of the UK.
- Infrastructure – revolutionise the UK’s physical and digital infrastructure. Ensure that the whole of the UK has access to super-fast broadband, better mobile connectivity, and delivering investments in the strategic schemes such as the electrification.
- International Trade – support exporters to drive economic growth. Expand trade support programmes, secure continued access to existing Free Trade Agreements, develop trade policy with business, and leverage Chambers of Commerce, which are best placed to provide stable export support in all regions of the UK.
- Brexit – work with businesses to secure the best possible deal with the EU. Protect the status of EU nationals in the UK, develop future customs procedures in partnership with business and create a future UK immigration system that is responsive to economic needs and skills shortages at all levels.