We all know public sector austerity is going to be with us for some time. That translates into net job losses in the public sector and they will have to be made good in the private sector.
That’s a relatively straightforward equation but it requires much more understanding of the private sector.
We need less red tape and the rolling back of the state. We also need to nourish and encourage more small businesses and work closely with the private sector to deliver graduates and school-leavers who are job-ready.
The procurement system is also impenetrable for many small businesses. It favours large corporate entities with professional departments because of the complexity.
The council is doing a lot of the right things by presenting this strategy.
What I would say to the politicians, however, is the economic development service has just one per cent of the total budget for the council. If we’re serious about the political momentum behind this we’d like to see more resources going into economic development and job creation.