Firms fear red tape and euro

Tim Wallace
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THE EUROZONE crisis is the most important issue facing the UK economy, but the government should do more to support the financial services industry and slash the red tape damaging any hopes of recovery, top London businesses told Ipsos Mori’s Captains of Industry survey.

The level of regulation on UK businesses is harming the economy according to 96 per cent of the London-based FTSE 350 firms surveyed, and limits on immigration will harm the country’s competitiveness according to 53 per cent.

Despite these concerns, 84 per cent believe the government’s policies will improve the state of the economy in the long term, with 77 per cent expecting the planned public sector cuts to have little or no impact on their firms.

Although 48 per cent feel the government has too much involvement in business and industry, 56 per cent of London’s firms want more support for the financial services sector.

“Deregulation is the key to creating jobs,” said Ruth Porter from the Institute for Economic Affairs.

“There are numerous regulations the government should be slashing. Even leaving aside ones from Europe, they could easily get rid of the minimum wage, climate change targets, unfair dismissal and disabled access.”