Theresa May is to promise an "unashamedly pro-business" government

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The UK voted to leave the European Union on 23 June. (Source: Getty)

Prime minister Theresa May will today vow to lead an “unashamedly pro-business” government, while also vowing to crackdown on bosses that “game the system”.

Speaking at the Lord Mayor's Banquet at the Guildhall tonight, May is expected to stress her desire to make the UK an attractive destination for businesses to invest after Brexit.

Citing the government's success in securing future manufacturing in the north east from Nissan, May will promise to back the industries of the future, and rebalance the economy across sectors and geographies.

“We will do everything we can to make the UK outside the EU the most attractive place for businesses to invest and grow,” she is expected to say.

May will also pledge her commitment to free markets, but she is expected to further stress her willingness to clampdown on bad businesses.

“We can also recognise when a minority of businesses and business figures appear to game the system and work to a different set of rules, the social contract between businesses and their employees fails – and the reputation of business as a whole is quickly undermined,” she will say.

It comes as Downing Street seeks to burnish its credentials with the UK's employers.

CBI boss Carolyn Fairbairn is set to meet with the Prime Minister this month, while businesses groups are also seeking to steer May's controversial plans to put workers on boards when a consultation is launched within days.

May entered office vowing to scrutinise all foreign takeovers in key British industries, tackle excessive corporate salaries and put workers on company boards.

Only last month home secretary Amber Rudd was forced into a rapid u-turn over plans to “flush out” businesses failing to hire enough UK staff.

And May's own speech at the Conservative party conference saw a similarly furious response from businesses after she pledged action against “dysfunctional markets” and multinationals that “dodge” tax.

May's comments will come after the City's new lord mayor, Andrew Parmley, tells guests that economic growth must be shared across the country.

Parmley is expected to say that voters in places like his hometown of Blackpool have been left unaware of the benefits of a strong Square Mile by the lack of improvement nearer to him.

Speaking for the first time as Lord mayor he will call for a “global Britain powered by a global City”.

“I will shine a light on the City’s ‘added value’ in smaller towns across the UK through the investment, jobs and the ways we support local economies to become thriving hubs,” Parmley said.

Meanwhile, representatives of the banking sector are calling on the chancellor to secure important post-Brexit rights ahead of his first Autumn Statement later this month.

The British Bankers' Association (BBA) has used its Autumn Statement submission to urge Philip Hammond to provide further clarity on transition periods and a more transparent negotiating timetable.

"The outcome of the referendum vote has generated uncertainty for the banking sector and added to the strategic questions resulting from a low interest rates environment, growing regulatory requirements, and increasing digitalisation," the BBA wrote. "To avoid disruption to businesses and customers in the UK and the EU, it will be important to limit disruption to financial services and the banking sector."

Financial firms in the UK currently use passporting rights to do business within the EU. A transition period would extend valuable rights, such as passporting, for a long enough period for banks to adapt to a new political and regulatory environment.

Read more: Bankers urge Hammond to push for transition periods

The BBA has previously warned many of the alternatives to passporting, such as regulatory equivalence, will not secure banks sufficient access to the Single Market and are "poor shadows" to the rules the industry currently enjoys.

Yesterday the chairman of RBS, Sir Howard Davies, backed calls for a transitional deal with Europe when Britain leaves the EU, warning of the risk to banks if they swiftly lost access to the single market and passporting rights.

"I think it is damaging if we don't get a transitional deal, because I think you will then see banks and financial institutions making decisions on the basis of uncertainty," he told ITV's Peston on Sunday show.

He added: "They will not wait because they have to make a decision which will allow them to continue to function in the event of a hard Brexit if that's a possibility."

The bank boss, who opposed the UK leaving the EU, warned that cutting off London's financial services from Europe risks destabilising "the whole of of the European financial markets".

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