Truro and St Austell MP Matthew Taylor has been meeting local businesses to assess how they might be helped in the face of what may be the most dramatic recession since World War Two.
Over recent weeks, Taylor has visited a range of town centre businesses, and larger employers such as Cornish Concrete Products (where he opened an innovative new production facility) and Imerys Minerals (who recently shed 80 jobs from their Cornwall operations, and have had to curtail production with temporary shutdowns due to falling demand).
Taylor has also met a range of other businessmen and women, and the Regional Development Agency, in one-to-one meetings discussing current business issues – chiefly the supply and cost of credit facilities.
Commenting, Taylor said: “These meetings have undoubtedly provided vital information to inform solutions and support. Cornish businesses need as much support as possible to avoid unnecessary job losses. I have already been in touch with the banks and Government Ministers on a number of issues for local businesses which is generating a positive response.”
Following his recent meetings Taylor will be personally contacting bosses at all of the 25 largest employers in his constituency as part of a wider survey across Cornwall by the Liberal Democrat parliamentary team.
The work is all aimed at seeing what can be done to help Cornish businesses at a local level. The consultations are also being feed into work at the national level by the Commission for Rural Communities, whose Chairman Stuart Burgess has invited Matthew Taylor and the other Cornish MPs to contribute.
“This recession is very different from the 1980’s and 1990’s, because it is global, and is being deepened and lengthened by the severe lack of credit. Businesses are facing not just lower demand, but increased costs for credit, if they can get it at all. This risks putting out of business perfectly viable concerns, simply because normal credit facilities are not available at a reasonable price.
“The credit crunch is a particular problem in seasonal economies like ours, where availability of reasonably priced credit facilities is essential over the winter period for businesses that rely on summer trade to pay the bills. All the information I am getting is helping ensure Ministers, the banks, and the Regional Development Agency do what is needed to resolve these problems as quickly as possible.”