Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Region's Firms Divided on Plans for Economy

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Region's Firms Divided on Plans for Economy

Article excerpt

A POLL of North East firms has revealed that neither the coalition nor Labour can claim firm regional backing for their economic plans ahead of the Spending Review.

The North East Chamber of Commerce survey also shows members want to see the Government's capital spending outlay trebled, with priority given to investment in economic development, education and transport infrastructure.

In the survey, which was conducted as part of a larger study by the British Chambers of Commerce, 30% of companies thought public spending and taxes should be lowered.

This was just 1% higher than the 29% of firms that wanted to see higher public spending with taxes remaining the same, even if this meant more public borrowing.

In an incredibly tight poll, 24% of businesses responding backed the status quo of taxes and spending remaining the same, whereas 17% called for higher spending and higher taxes to stimulate growth.

NECC Director of Policy Ross Smith said: "This survey clearly demonstrates that businesses in the North East are not ideological about how economic growth is delivered, just so long as it is being delivered. …

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