Mark, who is supporting former Chancellor Rishi Sunak MP for leader, told the assembled businesspeople – including new Chamber chief executive Corin Crane – that he understood concerns around issues such as rising costs and recruitment problems.
He said: “Businesses are the engine of economic growth and I understand that there has been some uncertainty.
“Coalition Government was followed by the EU referendum and the vote to leave. We were then hit by the Coronavirus pandemic and, just as we were emerging from the pandemic, we’ve seen global energy prices rise as a consequence of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which has had a knock-on effect for businesses.
“As a former small business owner, I fully understand the need of businesses for certainty.
“There are many challenges that companies are facing and it is always extremely helpful to hear directly from businesses through my meetings with the Chamber. I am then able to help to address those and take them up with colleagues in Government.”
The meeting also heard from Kyle Smith, of Urban & Civic, on the Houlton development, and from Matt Hadlington, of HS2 Ltd, on the opportunities for businesses and individuals to work with HS2.
Karen Shuter, chair of the Chamber’s Rugby branch, said: “It was fantastic to be back round the table for a full, in-person branch meeting with businesses from across Rugby.
“I was keen to hear from companies directly on what issues they are facing, particularly with Mark Pawsey in the room.
“We heard how rising costs are really starting to bite and how much of an issue recruitment and skills are for companies across the region.
“Businesses are looking to be as flexible and innovative as possible to help fill the roles required in order to help them grow and were also keen for that to be one of the main messages for Mark to deliver to his new leader in the next few weeks.”
Pictured (left to right): Kyle Smith, Mark Pawsey MP, Karen Shuter, Matt Hadlington, Corin Crane