eLondon Chamber of Commerce News June 2016
London Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) has welcomed the announcement of the launch of the Night Tube, saying it will boost the capital’s economy.
Following the closure of Tower Bridge for three months, LCCI has renewed its calls for a new East London river crossing.
LCCI – London needs greater devolutionary powers
LCCI has called for more powers for London so that devolution is a meaningful process. This follows Centre for Cities questioning whether new “metro mayors” will have enough power to deliver under devolution proposals.
Employment in London grew by 2.5% in 2015, beating the UK-wide rate of 2% and providing work for another 107,400 people. 2008 London has seen huge growth in very high and very low skilled jobs, whilst those on middle-income jobs haven’t done as well.
A decision on Heathrow’s third runway may be delayed to September, Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin has said. He warned that “the timetable is very tight” for the Prime Minister to oversee a decision before the Parliamentary summer recess.
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has announced that he will put new measures in place to help protect and expand office space for London’s small businesses, start-ups and entrepreneurs.
Queen’s Speech 2016: what it means for business
The Queen’s Speech 2016 covered: the Digital Economy Bill (including new laws to help telecommunications providers build the infrastructure needed for faster broadband and better mobile networks); the Modern Transport Bill (including legislation to enable the future development of the UK’s first commercial spaceports); and the Neighbourhood Planning and Infrastructure Bill (including a new statutory basis for the independent National Infrastructure Commission to help invest in Britain’s long-term future).
Advisory rates that apply fuel cost for company cars changed on 1 June 2016. The new rates will only apply to the following: a company reimbursing employees for business travel in their company cars; and where employees are required to repay the cost of fuel used for private travel.
Nearly five million employed people – a quarter of the workforce – are still ineligible for auto-enrolment and are not saving into a pension scheme, according to the Work and Pensions Select Committee (WPSC). The main reason is given as low pay
Essential Business News
UK industrial output grew at the fastest rate in nearly four years in April, boosted by pharmaceuticals, car production and gas. This was despite other signs of economic grow slowing down before the EU referendum.
The costs to employers of implementing the National Living Wage (NLW) are expected to lead to a 1.7% growth in average salaries in 2016, according to the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD).
Singapore is expected to overtake the UK by 2020 to become the world’s second-largest offshore financial centre behind Switzerland.
UK retail spending picks up in May
After two stagnant months, UK retail spending rose by 1.4% compared with May 2015, boosted by clothes sales, according to a British Retail Consortium survey.
Modest growth in UK service sector
Activity in the UK’s service sector picked up in May, according to the Markit/CIPS Purchasing Managers’ Index survey, although growth remained “subdued”.
Diesel prices to rise if government reverses tax
Diesel car owners could face tax rises on their car fuel to tackle deadly air pollution. Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin said it had been a “mistake” for former Labour chancellor Gordon Brown to cut taxes on diesel and that the issue needed to be addressed.
Retail Price Index J (RPIJ)
The Retail Prices Index J (all items) for May 2016 was 240.1 (base date January 1987=100). This represents a rise of 0.7% on May 2015 and a rise of 0.2% on April 2016. Please note that RPIJ is an improved method of calculating the RPI.