The Institute of Chartered Accounts in England and Wales (ICAEW) hosted the East of England Economic Summit in late November 2020, in which they will release their Business Confidence Monitor (BCM).

This economic summit provides expert insight into the economy, with industry leaders from all types of businesses across the UK contributing through panels, presentations, and speeches. The BCM itself gives one of the largest and most comprehensive quarterly reviews of business confidence in the UK.

The summit has added significance this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. At a time where the economic growth has been severely restricted by lockdown, business insights from senior industry figures will play a crucial role in the actions of policymakers, regulators, and businesses themselves.

The Summit this year will include presentations from both the ICAEW and the Bank of England on their views at the regional and national levels. There will also be smaller panel discussions at the county level for all counties across the East of England (Cambridgeshire, Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex, Bedfordshire Buckinghamshire & Hertfordshire). A panel will also be held on Brexit and the upcoming exit from the EU.
The panel segment of the summit will focus on the following issues:

  • Impact of COVID-19 on the local economy of the county
  • Access to skills and workers
  • Role of towns and cities
  • Brexit
  • Local business support
  • Capital investment

The final question that will be asked at the end of the Summit will be “what does the local professional community need to do to help support local SME’s and other employers to navigate what is likely to be a challenging first half of 2021?”.

In the Summit brief, the ICAEW stated; “The overarching objective of the event is to stimulate debate on how local economies can best weather the current storm and emerge stronger, and how local professional communities can work to support this over the next 12 months.”

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