Business leaders swap views with Bank of England's deputy governor
BUSINESS leaders from Slough, Windsor and Maidenhead had their say with the Bank of England's deputy governor.
Charles Bean met representatives from industries including banking, telecommunications and accountancy from multi-national and start-up organisations on Monday and Tuesday last week.
Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce also held a meeting with Mr Bean in Bracknell on Tuesday last week, for members to raise concerns about the Euro crisis and bank lending to small businesses.
The chamber's business manager, Gary Cranford, said afterwards it was fantastic for members to be able to speak directly with Mr Bean and added: "It is helpful for the Bank too in order to be able to talk to businesses and get a lot of useful feedback that they use to determine how interest rates are working out for the future." Mr Bean is a member of the Bank's nine-strong Monetary Policy Committee, which meets monthly to decide UK interest rates.
On the meeting, Mr Bean told The Midweek: "The message has tended to be it's been flattish, not contracting sharply but what growth there is pretty modest, and a bit of a sense that this looks to persist for some while yet, certainly into next year."
He added: "This part of the country is actually quite well-placed. It has quite a few technology firms, good connections to Heathrow and through there to the global economy. Unemployment remains low.
"It's perhaps reasonable to say that we'd expect people to be a bit more optimistic here about being able to deal with the uncertain environment than they might be in some other parts of the country."