Havant MP Alan Mak has thrown his support behind banks and building societies as an integral part of the local business community.
Mr Mak attended a business breakfast hosted by Barclays at Seacourt Tennis Club on Hayling Island to show his support for the sector.
The Havant MP joined 27 other representatives from the worlds of local manufacturing, enterprise and services to discuss a range of topics concerning local industry and infrastructure.
Mr Mak took the opportunity to speak to those present about the importance of higher education, vocational courses, and apprenticeships in order to further reduce the ‘skills gap’ in the local jobs market.
Mak said the banking sector had experienced turbulence over the last decade, and one of the best ways of restoring public trust was for them to engage with local communities and support local businesses.
He also praised the role of high street banks which have a personal relationship with businesses in their area.
He said: ‘I was delighted to speak at Barclays Business Breakfast, an excellent initiative to get local business leaders discussing ideas for growth in an open and friendly environment with their local bank.
‘Alongside other banks, Barclays do a great deal of excellent work getting the local economy moving.
‘The meeting was hugely constructive, and covered a great deal of ground from increasing funding grants to local businesses, to looking at ways we can improve local infrastructure.
He added: ‘Banks have a big role to play in our local economy, whether it’s helping a business to start, funding growing businesses, or providing business advice.
‘The best way banks can restore trust in the finance sector is contribute to local communities and local businesses.’
Caroline Burley, head of Barclays business and corporate for the Solent, said: ‘This event was a great opportunity to bring together businesses from the area for a really positive and practical discussion.
‘Our customers locally are doing well with a strong desire to expand and there is a genuine feeling of confidence in the area which was reflected at the event.’
I am really grateful to Alan for being so generous with his time.’