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Election Reaction – John Grainger, Executive Director, BECBC

The election result means a more consolidated position for Cumbria with regards to its influence over central Government. The likelihood of support for infrastructure projects is therefore greatly enhanced, particularly the A595 which connects the communities in West Cumbria to Carlisle in the north and Barrow in the south.

The ability of West Cumbria to speak with one voice for the first time in over a decade to a same colour Government should definitely reap benefits that undoubtedly the prospective candidates, now MP’s, will have been lobbying hard for on behalf of their community/constituents to front bench Ministers during the hustings.

From the perspective of North West Nuclear Arc which is strongly supported by BECBC, a large number of the physical assets within the nuclear fuel cycle are now located in Conservative constituencies. So the increasing lobby by West Cumbria and our colleagues in North Wales for Small Modular Reactors and the assembly and the opportunities for collaborative working in the supply chain that goes alongside assembly and deployment, has received a filip.

The changing political landscape therefore allows for the recent declaration of intent signed by representatives of business organisations in NWNA to become a more compelling and cohesive lobby into the political landscape at Westminster.

It is still too early to understand what will be the impact of the election result on various sectors in Cumbria, and indeed the SME community, from the impending Brexit process. New Trade agreements with who are currently our European partners, and importantly a reinforcement of the trade position with USA and if the rumours are true following positive talks between USA and China on trade, then this will certainly have the ability to forge a UK- China trade agreement and perhaps accelerate that process. Achieving will give much more comfort to those reliant on import and export within their business.