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Parliamentary question about Business Rates retention


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On 16th January 2017, I raised the important issue of business rates with the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government during Communities and Local Government questions in the Chamber: Mr Steve Baker (Wycombe) (Con): What progress he has made on enabling local authorities to retain 100% of business rates.   The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (Sajid Javid): Councils have long campaigned for 100% business rate retention. Last week, we introduced the Local Government Finance Bill, which […]

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Visit to Premier Analytical Services


On Friday 18 November, I had the opportunity to visit Premier Analytical Services in Wycombe, part of the Premier Foods Group, a leading UK food producer. Premier Analytical Services specialise in the chemical analysis of food, focusing on food authenticity, food composition and food safety. The lab researches a range of issues including mycotoxins, trace contaminates, the overall authenticity of food, allergens, nutrition, vitamins, minerals and additives. Premier Analytical Services has close working links with the food standards agency, food manufacturers and […]

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The EU holds down wages and business growth


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EU regulations cost the UK economy over £33.3 billion every year. While only 6 percent of UK firms export to the EU, 100 percent of them must obey EU regulations. The Bank of England has calculated that for every 10 percent increase in immigration, wages for the poorest fall by around 2 percent. The Chairman of Britain Stronger In Europe, Lord Rose, has admitted that wages will rise if we leave the EU. Outside the EU, the UK’s democratically elected government will be free to pursue policies which will create more […]

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A Parliamentary Question on BHS


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Yesterday, I asked the Minister of State for Business, Skills and Innovation a question in the House following the unfortunate news that British Home Stores is likely to go into administration: Steve Baker: The market economy on which our civilisation rests is dangerously undermined when the privatisation of vast profits is swiftly followed by the projection of similarly vast losses on to other people, whether they be taxpayers or pensioners. Since corporations are creatures of the state, will my right hon. Friend […]

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National Apprenticeship Week


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This week is National Apprenticeship Week, a week in which to appreciate the benefits apprenticeships can bring to employers and apprentices alike. The Government is committed to achieving three million high quality apprenticeship starts by 2020, increasing opportunities for young people and helping to abolish long-term youth unemployment. There were 19,800 starts on Higher Apprenticeships in 2014/15, an increase of 115% on the previous year. Apprenticeships enable people to accelerate their careers with higher apprentices earning, on average, £150,000 more […]

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When planning goes wrong – business change of use


I feel sure I can claim the support of everyone if I write that the planning system should promote prosperity. I am certain those operating the system work diligently within the rules with that noble intent in mind. However, over the past few years, I have seen a number of instances where business owners have had what I considered their legitimate and beneficial commercial interests impeded or completely stymied by planning decisions. Reasons have always been given but in every case, […]

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Johnson & Johnson named Britain’s Healthiest Company 2015


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Johnson & Johnson (J&J), which has a major presence in High Wycombe, has been named Britain’s Healthiest Company and recognised as having Britain’s Healthiest Workforce following the UK’s largest wellness survey. Johnson & Johnson picked up the two awards after taking part in the joint initiative between The Sunday Telegraph, Mercer and VitalityHealth. The Healthiest Workforce award considered factors such as such as environment, staff engagement and participation, and company culture. Johnson & Johnson’s entry covered all three of its business sectors […]

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New measures to support entrepreneurs and job creation


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As the Legatum Institute’s Prosperity Index repeatedly shows, entrepreneurship and opportunity are the primary keys to overall prosperity. It is because life in society is a creative dynamic process of discovering how best to serve the needs of other people and to adjust to them. If we are to become the most prosperous nation within a generation, we will need to liberate that spirit of innovation, service and commerce which has always served our country so well. I was therefore delighted […]

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Women and Equalities Parliamentary Question


A question on women in business: Steve Baker (Wycombe) (Con): What recent progress she has made on encouraging women to set up their own businesses? The Minister for Women (Nicky Morgan): The Government offer a wide range of support to women entrepreneurs—for example, the new enterprise allowance, mentoring, business advice and start-up loans. I also recently announced a £1 million challenge fund specifically to support women to move their businesses online and take advantage of superfast broadband. We know these measures are making […]

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Featured Wycombe business: Origin


Our town’s motto is Industria Ditat – “industry enriches”. Industry in the broadest sense brings prosperity and fulfilment to our lives: it is industry which made High Wycombe great. With that in mind, I was delighted to visit Origin, an innovative and growing family firm which manufactures bi-fold doors, windows and blinds in High Wycombe for trade customers internationally. High Wycombe is a great place to live, work and do business. Please contact me on High Wycombe 448408 if you would […]

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