Suffolk Chamber of Commerce media statement: initial response to the 2018 Budget
John Dugmore, chief executive, Suffolk Chamber of Commerce:
“Suffolk Chamber of Commerce has been campaigning via the British Chambers of Commerce’s Fix the Fundamentals initiative for the Chancellor to incentivise business investment and boost productivity. We certainly achieved some good wins, including an increase in the Annual Investment Allowance, a commitment to Entrepreneur’s Relief and a halving in the amount that smaller firms pay for taking on apprenticeships.
“Support for our smaller retailers via business rates relief and a one-third cut in their business rates is also very welcome.
“Suffolk Chamber was surprised, contrary to the pre-Budget messaging, that there was no explicit mention of additional funding for Highways England to upgrade our strategic roads network. We hope that there will be more clarity over the next day or so on this important issue for Suffolk and the UK as a whole - with the A14 clearly not fit for purpose.
“In addition, businesses and consumers alike will remain concerned at the continued anaemic growth figures forecast between now and 2023. More capital investment in our communications, rail and road infrastructure – building for growth in other words – is needed now more than ever.”