It’s a great honour to have been appointed Business West Chairman, and I am excited by the challenges and prospects that we face.
I have arrived at a time when thinking about the future is foremost in all our minds, in light of political change, Brexit and the resulting economic effects.
Nevertheless, I think the future is very exciting.
A few weeks ago the Cassini mission came to a dramatic close as the spacecraft plunged into the atmosphere of Saturn after its epic journey of amazing discoveries. No doubt future generations will make more exciting explorations of worlds we know nothing of today.
Nearer to home, the future for us at Business West contains a lot of unknowns but it is no less exciting.
Young people will acquire skills from their education and will enter the adult world wanting jobs and careers that are satisfying and rewarding. Businesses will be crying out for people with the right skills just as they are today. Government will need successful businesses to create the wealth, employment and trade which sustains a prosperous society.
For all these needs to be met, business must influence government locally, nationally and even internationally, to enable government to create an environment in which enterprise can flourish.
Businesses grow; must innovate; must expand their markets and export to the world at large.
Businesses small and large will need expert help to navigate the regulatory frameworks and trading systems of the world’s markets. Government will continue to need to implement programmes that stimulate trade and export success for the country.
Success of the whole will require an ever greater supply of people with the skills and enthusiasm to generate new business ideas and make them into concrete success stories benefitting society as a whole.
Business West stands in the space between government and the business world providing the unique voice that enterprise needs; providing our educators with the information and links with which to create opportunities for people to develop the needed skills; providing government with the channels through which they can implement the programmes that facilitate economic success.
Business West will be at the centre; the voice of business serving all our best interests with information, influence and support for implementation.