KBzine: your kitchen and bathroom industry news - first
17th May 2013
CONTINUED from FRONT PAGE
George Osborne admitted that one of the biggest problems facing our economy is that Britain's working age population has lower skills than the populations of America, Germany and France. And as well as undertaking much needed reform of our schools and universities, the Government is committed to funding new University Technical Colleges which will provide 11-19 year olds with vocational training that is promised to be amongst the best in the world.
In Austria, Germany and Switzerland around one in four employers offer apprenticeships. In England fewer than one in 10 do - something that has to change. The news that the Government is to fund another 250,000 more apprenticeships over the next four years, is very welcome indeed.
However, while that's great news for people wanting to remain in the UK, I don't see our workforce taking many jobs in other parts of the EU until we Brits learn to converse competently in other languages, as our fellow Europeans manage to do so well!
There are many things I like about this budget but one of the main points that caught my eye is the move to cut the red tape that's strangling small businesses. I'm pleased that this week, our Prime Minister David Cameron is taking this fight against regulation to Brussels, where he will attempt to persuade our European allies to join him in trying to prevent our continent from pricing itself out of the market!
I said earlier that most reputable business groups support the budget but of course there have been negative comments too, mainly from members of the public mocking what they feel are derisory concessions for motorists, quoting just a 1p cut in prices now and a delay in the fuel duty inflation increase until next year.
I have to say that the cancellation of planned rises over the next few years is most welcome, while the Fair Fuel Stabiliser, which will balance out price fluctuations in global crude oil prices, is a brilliant move. For when you look at the bigger picture, i.e. how much money haulage businesses and companies running fleets of vehicles will save as a result, this really will help provide a much needed boost to the economy in terms of improved competitiveness, lower prices and these companies' ability to take on new employees.
"Britain is back in business," said the Chancellor.
I can't help but feel that he may be right.
25th March 2011