The best business advice, opinion, news and expertise in Greater Manchester and further afield.

Thursday, 15 April 2010

Election Update : Businesses "Where are ya?"

By Richard Critchley

Businesses “Where are ya?”

In the style of Delia Smith pleading with the fans of Norwich City Football Club we’re asking businesses across Greater Manchester “Where are ya?” Labour’s proposed National Insurance Contributions' hike on employers is set to cost businesses in Greater Manchester £120m a year. In response to our recent economic survey, 75 per cent of employers are telling us that they are already rethinking their recruitment plans. You and your employees have made incredible sacrifices during this recession to keep unemployment low. Over 700,000 jobs have been retained - more than even the most optimistic of economists had hoped for! This tax will halt private sector job creation at a time when it is expected to invest to take up the inevitable job losses that will soon start in the public sector – this will happen irrespective of who is occupying No.10 on May 7th. The Institute for Fiscal Studies have estimated that there is a £30 billion hole in each of the parties' Manifesto pledges. This means that we can expect more tax hikes and more public sector spending cuts.

Make Your Voice Heard

NIC will rise and jobs will be lost unless you have your say. Make the difference by meeting the Prospective Parliamentary Candidates; attend your local Hustings event. Candidates have expressed an interest in hearing business views and they want to hear what you have to say. You do make a difference and if you don’t speak up now then the new government will impact on you and your business possibly for the next five years.

Make sure you get involved and have your say, visit our website for more details.

Air Travel Policy

The three main parties have now all announced their policies for tackling congestion at Heathrow Airport, but none appear to be offering anything to support our regional airports. Most worryingly, all parties are supporting increases in Air Passenger Duty or a new per flight tax, which has been shown to have a disproportionate impact on airports outside of the South East, due to their smaller markets and less profitable routes. If parties are serious about tackling congestion at London airports and supporting regional economies, they must recognise that a one size fits all policy for the airline industry will not work in the national interest. Are the regions once again being forgotten?

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