Research Profile

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

No room for Fool’s Gold when it comes to the British economy


Our sports stars have done us proud this summer - never mind Tour de France - its been a Tour de Force. There will no doubt be political squabbles over the immediate economic benefit of London 2012 but the British public have received a feelgood factor that in itself is a pretty good return on investment. Its certainly been enough to temporarily take our take most people's minds off the double dip recession.

To my mind, the Government could do worse than seek inspiration from TeamGB when it comes to the economy – they have systematically combined determination, planning, smart training and teamwork to lead a ruthlessly competitive international pack in a tough competition. We need to learn from this impressive display if we are going to power our way back to sustainable growth for UK.

The Government has persisted with a one-dimensional approach to economic fitness – trying unsuccessfully to shed a few pounds through a diet of austerity and the same old training regime of quantitative easing. It’s not working and a more sophisticated approach is needed. There have been recent calls, including most notably by Boris Johnson, for us to invest in the UK's infrastructure. He's right.

It seems obvious to me that we must create infrastructure which will entice the most creative and brightest minds from across the world to the UK – especially entrepreneurs. We must also ensure that they generate jobs; a skilled and experienced workforce is as vital a part of infrastructure for business as transport and broadband.

The success of Team GB was epitomised by the sustained success of cyclists. Even if our economy had the yellow jersey or a gold medal, we can’t afford the luxury of resting on our laurels. We need to invest in the future if we are to create a gold-plated British economy.

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