Govt defends business plan
Downing Street has dismissed claims that the Government is creating a "toxic" environment for British firms, insisting that ministers are doing what they "should" do to create growth.
Business leaders will meet David Cameron at Downing Street today and will reportedly say that the atmosphere towards business in the UK is becoming "quite poisonous".
The Prime Minister's business advisory group, which includes Sainsbury's chief Justin King, is expected to urge Mr Cameron to offer a more positive take on the role of big business in the UK economy.
But the Prime Minister's Official Spokesman today said: "We are doing what the Government should do. That's redoubling our efforts to make sure that we create the right environment to allow businesses to grow."
Asked whether the Government and business were at one another's throats currently, the spokesman said: "I don't think I accept that, as I was saying: what we've done over the past two years is taken a number of steps to improve the business environment, boosting infrastructure, we are cutting red tape, we're cutting corporation tax, we are reforming planning. These are all things that business have been asking for an we've been responding to that."
But he did not endorse comments by Philip Hammond that business leaders were "whinging".The row follows Foreign Secretary William Hague saying yesterday that businesses should stop “complaining” about the state of the economy, while Communities Secretary Eric Pickles said firms had to “work harder” to deliver growth.