Business bodies, including British Independent Retailers Association (BIRA), have urged the government to deliver clarity and certainty for independent traders despite the Prime Minister resigning.
Business leaders have responded with anger and dismay to the UK’s political chaos, after Liz Truss announced her resignation on Thursday (20), calling for whoever replaces Liz Truss to act rapidly to stabilise the crisis-hit economy.
Industry bosses have been almost unanimous in their condemnation of recent political turmoil, which they say has caused investment in the UK to stall as economists predict a long recession.
Jeff Moody Commercial Director of BIRA said, “What small business need now more than ever is stability in the government so they can plan for the future.“Retailers are now seeing real sales declining even with much higher prices masking the volume drops previously. Consumer confidence is at an all-time low, so BIRA is calling for Conservative MPs and members to make a quick and correct decision enabling the government to focus on the urgent needs of the economy. “Business’ need certainly so they can plan as well as the consumers need confidence to start spending again both can be achieved if the government starts to give real clarity now.” He added: “Quick and proper decisions on Reforming of Business Rates, Levelling up and Tax reform now will also help the retail economy plan, survive and prosper fuelling economic activity.”
Tony Danker, the director general of the Confederation of British Industry, the UK’s biggest business lobby group, said he believed half of companies considering investments would wait until the situation had stabilised.
“The politics of recent weeks have undermined the confidence of people, businesses, markets and global investors in Britain,” said Danker. “That must now come to an end if we are to avoid yet more harm to households and firms.
Tina McKenzie, a policy and advocacy chair at the Federation of Small Businesses, said companies needed to know if they would face a “cliff edge” on energy costs in April.
“Political turmoil feeding through to economic turbulence makes it harder for small businesses to operate, with rapidly changing policy decisions making planning much harder than it needs to be,” she said.
“The prospect of interest rates continuing to rise is causing sleepless nights for small business owners facing higher borrowing costs, just as prices for everything from electricity to eggs continue to climb.”