Speaking at CBI Scotland’s Annual Dinner, the CBI’s director-general Carolyn Fairbairn asserted that productivity growth across all parts of the UK should be the “single most important domestic goal for business and Government” over the next five-year period.
Outlining early conclusions from the business group’s work on unlocking economic growth across all UK regions and nations, Fairbairn stated: “Productivity may not be the most riveting of terms, but it really does matter. It’s the only route to rising living standards. It lifts people out of poverty, pays for public services and, importantly, creates opportunities for our young people.”
Speaking to more than 500 Scottish business leaders in Glasgow, alongside US Ambassador Matthew Barzun and Andrew Bester (Lloyds Bank Group director and CEO of commercial banking), Fairbairn highlighted the importance of building on sectoral strengths in local areas.
“It can be surprising to find that differences in productivity within a sector are bigger than those between sectors, and that sector mix in a region is almost never the driver of either good or bad productivity. You can be a successful region with almost any mix of business sectors. The policy implication of this is clear. Fan the flames of the successes you have in front of you.”