The City’s Policy Chairman says it is vital for new PM Rishi Sunak to provide stability during his first days in office – and beyond.
Sunak has replaced Liz Truss in 10 Downing Street after the latter’s turbulent spell as PM lasted just 45 days – the shortest spell of any political leader in UK history.
City policy boss Chris Hayward intimated that swift work was needed to address some of the challenges left at Number 10 by his predecessors.
He said: “We congratulate Rishi Sunak on becoming the new Conservative Party leader. The City Corporation worked closely with him as Chancellor and now looks forward to building on our positive relationship when he takes over as Prime Minister.
“It is vital that his premiership offers stability while also confronting the challenges facing our country.
“Businesses and communities across the UK will be looking to see a renewed focus from the Government to boost growth and investment.
“Delivering on the secondary objective for the financial regulators to promote growth and international competitiveness in the Financial Services and Markets Bill will support this agenda. It is also important that the UK maintains its strong global leadership on net zero to remain competitive.”
Sunak, however, used his first public address as PM to praise Truss for her ‘noble’ attempt to lead the country, but said “mistakes were made”.
He said: “I want to pay tribute to my predecessor Liz Truss, she was not wrong to want to improve growth in this country, it is a noble aim.
“And I admired her restlessness to create change. But some mistakes were made.
“Not borne of ill will or bad intentions. Quite the opposite, in fact. But mistakes nonetheless.
“And I have been elected as leader of my party, and your Prime Minister, in part, to fix them. And that work begins immediately.”
Hayward said that financial and professional services firms will play a key part in the national recovery, and went on to say that the Online Safety Bill “must be given urgent attention” by Sunak’s new-look government.
He added: “Levelling up must include all parts of the UK – including London – as the capital’s success benefits every corner of the country.
“The sector drives growth, accounts for more than 2.3 million jobs across the UK – two thirds of which are outside of London – produces over 10 per cent of economic output, and contributes 13 per cent of Government tax receipts.
“To protect people from economic crime and keep people safe the Online Safety Bill must be given the urgent attention it deserves.
“Fraud is now the most common crime in the UK, costing the economy billions every year. So we must ensure that social media and technology firms put a real effort into preventing their platforms being used for fraud.”