Belfast Telegraph

Osborne told to forget the deficit, businesses want growth

Business leaders have called on the Government to focus on boosting economic growth rather than tackling structural deficit.

A survey of more than 350 firms by the EEF manufacturers organisation also showed little enthusiasm for changing the UK's relationship with Europe.

Most of those polled said stimulating the economy should now be the Government's overwhelming priority, with only a quarter regarding reducing the UK's structural deficit as a top priority.

The importance of the European economy was highlighted by the fact that 40% of companies wanted the Government to press eurozone countries to make greater efforts to resolve the debt crisis, and a third said the coalition should work with European partners to accelerate measures to strengthen growth in Europe.

Terry Scuoler, chief executive of the EEF, said Chancellor George Osborne must use his Tory conference speech to convince business that growth was the government's number one priority and that he had a plan to deliver it.