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Suffolk business plea for General Election candidates to "do their bit" for county's firms

PUBLISHED: 14:20 14 November 2019 | UPDATED: 14:43 14 November 2019

John Dugmore, CEO of Suffolk Chamber of Commerce, said business leaders were frustrated. Picture: DAVID GARRAD

John Dugmore, CEO of Suffolk Chamber of Commerce, said business leaders were frustrated. Picture: DAVID GARRAD

Suffolk business chiefs have called on the county's Parliamentary candidates to end the Brexit stalemate and "do their bit" for local firms.

Suffolk Chamber of Commerce is contacting all of the candidates for this year's General Election across the seven constituencies, quizzing them on what they will do to address the issues local firms are facing.

Among those are the uncertainty around Brexit, infrastructure limitations and workforce challenges such as seasonal labour and skills training.

John Dugmore, Suffolk Chamber chief executive, said: "The message from business communities all over Suffolk and the wider UK couldn't be clearer: the next Government must deliver an end to the Brexit stalemate and take decisive steps to improve the business environment here at home.

"To say business leaders are frustrated would be putting it mildly. They are doing their bit for Suffolk - and they think it is high time that Government and opposition did their bit too to break this endless stalemate.

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"We cannot afford to allow our infrastructure to fray, for the gaping holes in our training and skills system to go unfilled, or for governments to pile on new costs that stop firms from investing in growth.

"Businesspeople across Suffolk pay their taxes diligently, and care deeply about their communities and the environment. Westminster should not be distracted from delivering the conditions needed for growth, jobs and prosperity here at home.

"Our proposals would help an incoming administration reignite business confidence and investment - and would pay lasting dividends for our communities and the UK economy."

The chamber has contributed to the British Chambers of Commerce General Election manifesto published this week, called 2020 and beyond.

The manifesto calls on the Government to avoid a disorderly exit from the EU, ensure new immigration systems avoid administrative issues for companies, increase apprenticeship funding and ensure continuity of trading conditions among other measures.

The Suffolk Chamber of Commerce is asking all the candidates what they believe the biggest issues facing Suffolk businesses are, how will they work with the chamber to address those issues and how they feel about Brexit as an opportunity or challenge.

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