Parliament returns: Six MPs business needs to know about

Jessica Morris
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Who is on the benches for business? (Source: Getty)

Parliament meets today for the first time since the Conservatives swept to a shock victory in the General Election. Over the next few days the key focus will be chancellor George Osborne's pledge to deliver a new budget "for working people" before the summer recess. But who has the fate of British business in their hands?

We all know about the previous record of chancellor George Osborne's second in command Francis Maude - as well as Damian Hinds who joined the Treasury as exchequer secretary. And, of course, there's also David Gauke, who remained in his role as financial secretary to the Treasury.

But there's lots of new faces to the business community - here's everyone else businesses should watch out for:

  • Sajid Javid, business secretary:
    Thatcherite Javid's appointment as secretary of state for the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills was given the thumbs up by the City, viewing it as a "solid" move.

    His political portfolio includes time as secretary of state for culture from 2014 to 2015, minister for equalities in 2014, financial secretary to the Treasury from 2013 to 2014 as well as economic secretary from 2012 to 2013.

    Outside of politics, he also has experience that should stand him in good stead for the new role. When he was just 25, Javid became the youngest vice-president in the history of Chase Manhattan Bank in New York, before moving on to Deutsche Bank, where he rose through a number of roles to become head of credit trading, equity convertibles, commodities and private equity businesses in Asia.

    You can follow him on Twitter here.
  • Anna Soubry, minister for business and enterprise:
    Soubry has been appointed as minister for business and enterprise for the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills where she'll oversee policy relating to small and medium size businesses.

    Prior to this she was minister of state at the Ministry of Defence from July 2014, as well as parliamentary under secretary of state and minister for defence personnel, welfare and veterans from October 2013.

    Before this she was a journalist for various regional news programmes, and then moved on to become a presenter on Granada Television's This Morning in the early 1990s. Soubry was called to the bar in 1995 and worked as a criminal barrister in Nottingham.

    You can follow her on Twitter here.
  • Priti Patel, minister for employment:
    As the minister for employment, Patel will be charged with sustaining the Conservative party's jobs miracle, which has a record number of people in employment.

    She was first elected in May 2010 before being appointed as the UK Indian diaspora champion in November 2013.

    Before entering politics she was the director of corporate communications at PR firm Weber Shandwick.

    You can follow her on Twitter here.
  • Ros Altmann, pensions minister:
    As minister of state for pensions Ros Altmann will have to help retirees navigate new freedoms which came into force earlier this year.

    This is her first government post, but she was the coalition government’s business champion for older workers from 2014, and has also acted as a policy adviser to the government for a number of years.

    She may be familiar to some, having worked on institutional investment portfolios, including pension funds, for 15 years and has advised central banks and global corporations. She left the City to look after three young children before returning as an independent consultant and policy adviser.
  • Greg Clark, secretary for local communities:
    The secretary of state for Communities and Local Government will have the biggest impact on small and medium sized businesses.

    Greg Clark will take up this mantle having served as financial secretary to the Treasury from September 2012, as well as minister for cities in July 2011.

    Clark had also worked for the strategy consultant Boston Consulting Group and as head of commercial policy over at the BBC.

    You can follow him on Twitter here.
  • Harriett Baldwin, economic secretary:
    Baldwin's role of City minister to the Treasury will focus on financial services policy, as well as the government’s relationship with the City.

    She may be a reasonably familiar face, having been made lord commissioner to the Treasury in July 2014. She also served as the Prime Minister's trade envoy to Russia before joining government in February 2014 as an assistant whip.

    Baldwin had previously spent 20 years working in finance, focusing on the foreign exchange markets for investment bank JP Morgan.

    You can follow her on Twitter here.

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