Aston Business School to host ‘Question Time’

Business debate

Three key MPs from the region will be quizzed by business leaders at a General Election debate being hosted by Aston Business School in Birmingham later this week.

The free ‘Question Time’ event, which has been organised by Birmingham Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCI), will see Lorely Burt (Solihull, Liberal Democrat), Caroline Spelman (Meriden, Conservative) and Gisela Stuart (Edgbaston, Labour) take part.

The event will take place this Friday (April 16) at the Lakeside Conference Centre at Aston University from 5.15pm onwards. Our in-house ‘David Dimbleby’, Peter Shearer, Director at Aston University’s Business Partnership Unit, will be chairing the event.

BCI head of policy Katie Teasdale said: “This major interactive business event offers the chance to hear from leading Members of Parliament debate what their party will do for business should they be elected.”

The BCI has launched its 2010 General Election Manifesto, Delivering for Birmingham and Solihull Businesses, in advance of the debate.

The manifesto captures the measures Birmingham and Solihull businesses believe will deliver private sector growth and create jobs and wealth in the West Midlands. It makes clear Birmingham and Solihull’s business priorities for the next Government, including:
  • Cancellation of the one per cent rise in National Insurance Contributions scheduled for April 2011
  • Support for employers to retain apprentices and a reduction in the bureaucracy associated with hiring new apprentices 
  • Improvements to skills support to ensure it is demand-led and really meets the needs of local businesses 
  • Extension of the runway at Birmingham International Airport 
  • Development of a high speed rail network serving both Birmingham city centre and Birmingham International Station 
  • Introduction of innovative funding mechanisms for crucial infrastructure development 
  • Expansion of Quick Wins to reduce road congestion
Ms Teasdale added: “It also urges all political parties to work with the Chamber to identify public sector efficiencies and makes clear the need to protect investment in vital business support services, including UKTI which helps businesses in our region to export all over the world.”

The Chamber has already met a number of leading politicians to discuss the manifesto, including Lord Andrew Adonis, Secretary of State for Transport and Shadow Chancellors George Osborne MP and Dr Vince Cable MP.

To register for the debate, sponsored by Aston Business School, which will be followed by networking, wine and a buffet visit www.abs.aston.ac.uk/events . The event will close at 8.30pm. For more information, contact Dhiren Katwa, Press Officer at Aston University, on 0121 204 4553 or Katie Teasdale, Head of Policy, at k.teasdale@birminghamchamber.org.uk or on 0121 450 4204.

Aston Business School

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Birmingham Chamber

Birmingham Chamber of Commerce and Industry is one of the UK’s oldest and largest Chambers and represents almost 3,500 companies that employ over 170,000 people in Birmingham and Solihull. It offers extensive services to industry and commerce, having served the interests of business for over two centuries, promoting trade locally, nationally and internationally.

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