Simon Collins, UK Chairman of KPMG, comments on the Prime Minister’s speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos.
Simon Collins, UK Chairman of KPMG:
“The Prime Minister has sent a clear signal of intent to build on Britain’s heritage as a strong multi-cultural trading nation and establish the country as the global leader of free trade. Her speech will go some way to assuage the nerves of CEOs, who have been concerned by the rise of protectionism in other corners of the globe.
“However, in order to cement our position on the world stage, we must first build the right foundations at home. Brexit is an opportunity to create a new economy for the UK, based on skills, innovation and talent, which more of society will benefit from. Business has a critical role to play in building our economic future but the Prime Minister threw down the gauntlet to companies to operate in a way that offers opportunities for the masses and not the wealthy few. CEOs I speak to recognise that many feel left behind by capitalism and this is a critical concern the majority are determined to address. Theresa May didn’t mince her words, business leaders are vital to the success of this vision, but they must stop hand-wringing and start an action plan to ensure taxes are paid, the disparity between executive pay and average pay is reduced and best practice corporate governance is a golden thread throughout everything we do.
“Over the next decade a ‘responsible’ business will offer new opportunities for more of its workforce, embrace technology for innovation, and work with government to help manage the social impact of technology and protectionism.
“As well as employers we can be educators, and provide the backbone of training needed to grow the country’s skills base and enable us to become a truly Global Britain.”
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