Reacting to today’s announcement of the Comprehensive Spending Review (CSR), Steve Elliott, the Chief Executive of the Chemical Industries Association said: “Several aspects of the Review are good news for our sector. As we get through the pandemic and hopefully secure a strong trading relationship with the European Union, the focus on ensuring we have the skills to deliver a new future is good news both for the economy as a whole and for people’s future job prospects”.
Elliott also said “The financial commitment to rebuild colleges, money for the Lifetime Skills Guarantee, extension of traineeships, sector based work academies and national careers service are all helpful. In particular improving the way the apprenticeship levy works is long overdue but we need more flexibility. In our CSR representations we have called for many of these measures and especially a complete overhaul of the apprenticeship levy”.
He continued, “The confirmation today of a comprehensive new national infrastructure strategy, UK infrastructure bank to be headquartered in the north and the £4 billion levelling up fund is also to be welcomed. So too is the mention of £14.6 billion for Research & Development and we hope the relevant detail of this is an attractive proposition that allows for growing UK investment and opportunities by chemical businesses. As the UK’s biggest manufacturing exporter, we welcome the Chancellor's pledge of more funding for trade deals.
Elliott concluded, “As ever we need to see the detail. While we rightly fight the pandemic and the economic effects of it, let us get the free trade deal with the European Union that has regulatory consistency. Our industry and our workforce are well placed to deliver net zero and levelling up ambitions and we look forward to continuing to play our part in partnership with Government”.
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