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    Government must focus on growth as well as inflation: CBI

    The price of fruit and vegetables is displayed on a trader's market stall in London on May 12, 2022. (Photo by JUSTIN TALLIS/AFP via Getty Images)

    The UK’s recent austerity budget may avert a deeper recession, but the government must focus more on growth to improve the country’s long-term prospects, the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) will say Monday.

    The business lobby group’s director general, Tony Danker, will tell its annual conference that the government and companies need to focus on three areas to make the country more productive.

    Danker will open the conference by arguing that “while fiscal credibility looks to have been restored, there are three imperatives to get the economy growing,” according to a CBI press release published ahead of his speech.

    Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s government must work to unlock private investment and change rules “to overcome political barriers”, with more migration needed to fill job vacancies, Danker will say.

    Businesses must also show “even greater ingenuity than during Covid,” he will add.

    Sunak will attend the conference in Birmingham, “where he’ll deliver a keynote speech focussed on the subject of innovation,” according to his Downing Street office.

    CBI chief Danker will stress that the prime minister cannot merely concentrate on taming inflation.

    “Aggressively getting inflation down is the right thing to do… and I pay tribute to the Prime Minister and Chancellor for taking the tough choices needed to achieve that.

    “But what about growth? That’s what the mini budget got wrong,” he will say.

    “Growth is good. Yet Britain’s had 15 years of low growth and flatlining productivity. We can’t afford a repeat.”

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