The Economy and Work

Part of Debate on the Address – in the House of Commons at 2:33 pm on 26th May 2016.

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Photo of Mims Davies Mims Davies Conservative, Eastleigh 2:33 pm, 26th May 2016

I am pleased to be part of this debate on the final day of our consideration of the Gracious Speech—it is my second one. We are discussing vital matters focused on the economy and work. I am pleased to see action being taken on sugar levels, as tackling that issue is vital in my constituency, where diabetes and amputations stretch the NHS.

The apprenticeship levy is part of this Queen’s Speech. It will be introduced in 2017 for larger employers, and I truly welcome it. Apprenticeships are a fantastic way to help young people or to help older people to change career or re-skill. It was a real pleasure on the day of the Queen’s Speech to meet Calum from Hedge End, who is an Airbus apprentice. We are very lucky to have Eastleigh College, which puts apprenticeships at the heart of education and where Baxi supports a gas training centre—we are very short of gas engineers.

The Chancellor well knows that in Eastleigh we have B&Q, but he is also well aware that in Eastleigh we need the vital Chickenhall Lane link road. Only under this Conservative majority Government has real progress been made on bringing that forward. The link will increase productivity and reduce queues, so I am delighted to see it in the Budget book.