A combination of red tape and public-sector spending cuts is putting jobs at risk in the retail sector, according to the British Retail Consortium.

BRC chairman Luke Mayhew will issue the stark warning tonight at the body’s annual retail industry dinner, attended by Tory business minister Mark Prisk.

“The probable reductions in public sector jobs and services will be tough for many of our customers,” Mayhew will say in his address to attendees.

“But what concerns me is the potential collateral damage to the private sector if the Government does not actively encourage enterprise and push back the bureaucratic creep [that] has pervaded nearly everything we do.”

He will add: “Retail is one of the economy’s best vehicles for new jobs and growth. Despite the focus on gloom and doom, retailers are employing thousands more people than a year ago.

“To continue this, we need an environment that encourages private sector investment and growth. We do not see enough evidence yet that this is at the heart of the Government’s agenda.”

Read more
British Retail Consortium claims food prices up 3.8% (8 September 2010)
BRC warns Whitehall over local bureaucracy (6 September 2010)