The London business chief urges the capital’s MPs to make a bipartisan demand from the government for a “right plan for London”

RIchard Burge said it was important that London’s global city status be maintained as the country recovers from Covid-19

One of London’s most influential business leaders has urged London MPs “regardless of the party” to band together and demand “a reasonable plan for London” from the government to help the city recover from the pandemic and “ensure that.” we keep ours. ” Place as a cosmopolitan and cosmopolitan city. “

Richard Burge, Managing Director of the London Chamber of Commerce and Industry, told the BBC Politics London in the run-up to Wednesday’s budget: “London is the world city of this country, it is the goose that lays the golden egg. It’s time we fed the goose. “

Burge’s call for joint pressure from the capital’s 73 MPs, 21 of whom are members of the ruling Conservative Party, follows a series of appeals by corporate groups in the capital (including the Chamber) and the Mayor for targeted action to help London do the produces almost a quarter of Britain’s total economic output.

He said Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s announcement last week that around 700,000 businesses in the UK retail and hospitality sector that were hit by the Covid-induced drop in visitor numbers in the West End will receive £ 5 billion in grants is a very, very good move, ”which is difficult to say until it becomes clear whether the pot is big enough.

And Burge warned that an alleged corporate tax hike “would have devastating effects” unless it was part of a “grand economic recovery plan” that includes “not just recovery from Covid” but adjustment as well to the new circumstances made possible by the UK’s exit from the European Union.

“I think if there are to be tax increases and changes, it has to be [part of] a comprehensive review, ”said Burge. “We all need to be included in this discussion, and it cannot be piecemeal. We just need to have one strategy and that strategy needs to be established and we must all become part of it. “He argued that“ a proper review of all corporate and corporate taxes ”is required if a 21st century system is to be created.

When asked if he thinks the Chancellor heard the London deal, Burge replied, “I think he’s a little,” but noted that the Treasury “exists in a kind of bubble” and that things are more related looks at “macro”. Economy “. When he remarked that” no one in the Treasury Department has ever filled out a VAT form “or anything like that, he said the only way to overcome the problems arising from the government’s necessary detachment from” the realities of business ” can be, if they are “real” their discussions ”.

Burge said Paul Scully, MP for Sutton & Cheam and both Minister for London and Small Business, is doing a good job but is trying to “go further in government”. Scully said he hesitated to speculate on a number of budget-related reports in today’s newspapers but said, “Ultimately we have to find a way to make sure we can look at public finances as a whole, we don’t want a recovery too suffocate before it even starts. “

Sarah Jones, Labor MP for Croydon Central, reiterated her party leadership’s view that this is not the right time to raise corporate taxes, saying, “We are concerned that the Chancellor may want to raise taxes now so that he has something good may news before the general election in a couple of years. “Jones expressed particular concern about the future of High Streets and hoped the government’s long-term review of the Business Councils would come back soon. Scully said it was expected in October.

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