City Business Library (CBL) staff have been working hard behind the scenes to find ways in which we can continue to support our business customers during lockdown with their market research, business start-up questions and online learning. We understand that being at home can be frustrating, but we want to help you continue the business plans you had set for 2020.
Visit Covid-19 business support pages on website to find out more »
Free 121 Bitesize Business Advice Sessions
Regular business advice sessions have been condensed to 30 minute online consultations. These are being offered as a complimentary service to anyone thinking of starting a business while City Business Library is closed. Yes, that’s right – business advice for FREE! Once you register your allocated business advisor will be in touch to arrange a suitable time to talk.
Register for bitesize business advice 121 >>
Covid-19 Global Data
You can now subscribe to MarketLine to receive their regular Coronavirus Executive Briefing, helping you to understand how the outbreak may impact your business. CBL Remote Access Membership. You can still become a City Business Library member to access some of our databases which are available remotely. With the Access membership you can get free access to the Cobra (Complete Business Reference Adviser) database that has a factsheet ‘Coronavirus – Government Support for Business’ which contains advice on sources of information for businesses and employers.
Find more information about CBL membership »
Why not take this time to learn or develop your skills. All online courses have been discounted so you can make the most of your time at home.
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The UK government has circulated this link – https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov-guidance-to-assist-professionals-in-advising-the-general-public/guidance-to-assist-professionals-in-advising-the-general-public – to advise the public on how to prevent spread of 2019–nCoV infection, what symptoms to look for, and what to do if you become unwell in a variety of settings. The guidance covers the following topics:
- Preventing spread of infection
- Actions on return from China
- Symptoms and what to do
- Feeling unwell while away from home
- Travel to countries outside China that have 2019-nCoV cases
- Cleaning shared spaces
Advice and resources on how your business can prepare for the UK leaving the EU
Brexit checklist for businesses
The British Chambers of Commerce has put together a Business Brexit Checklist, to help businesses plan for Brexit.
The CBI has also published a report to advise businesses on No Deal planning.
Government advice on preparing for Brexit
The Government has also published advice on what businesses should do to Get ready for Brexit.
Employer Toolkit for businesses which employ EU nationals
The Home Office has published an Employer Toolkit which covers the key details of the EU Settlement Scheme, information and materials with which to support affected staff and their families.
Brexit Business Resource Hub
The London Growth Hub and the Mayor of London have launched the Brexit Business Resource Hub to bring together resources to help firms plan, and map areas of their business affected by Brexit.
FSB advice for small businesses
The Federation of Small Businesses also has advice specifically for SMEs.
What we are doing on Brexit
To find out more on what the City of London Corporation has been doing on Brexit.
As part of their #LondonIsOpen campaign, City Hall has created a EU Londoners Hub detailing what there is to know about Brexit and how to prepare for it.
We’re delighted to have a guest author for our six monthly ward newsletter – Rev. Bertjan van de Lagemaat, Minister of the Dutch Church.
The newsletter covers the fascinating role the Church plays in our ward and City community, as well as their most successful Kingsday.
We were so delighted to see the Dutch Church and Dutch Centre celebrating King’s Day with a Friday, 26 April, evening event and a street market from 14:00 on Saturday, 27 April – https://www.dutchchurch.org.uk/dutch-centre-nieuws/#uk
There were opportunities to have stalls and displays. And let’s not forget that King Willem-Alexander celebrated his 52nd birthday, giving us an excuse to post a royal photo (learnt that from the Daily Mail!).
The day itself was fantastic. 1,200 people turned up. There was a great selection of food, beer, and genever. Children had a great time completing a series of games. And of course now there are plans for next year – an instant City of London tradition begins.
Today TfL published research about the economic benefits of the Healthy Streets Approach, as part of a new hub which is available online here: tfl.gov.uk/corporate/publications-and-reports/economic-benefits-of-walking-and-cycling
Research shows that when streets and public spaces in London’s town centres and high streets are improved, retail rental values increase, more retail space is filled and there is a 93 per cent increase in people walking in the streets, compared to locations that have not been improved. The research has also found that people walking, cycling and using public transport spend the most in their local shops, 40 per cent more each month than car drivers.
The online hub will be kept up to date with research and statistics from TfL and others, highlighting the economic impact that street improvements can have. Current material on the hub includes:
- a report setting out the economic benefits of planning cycling and walking improvements alongside housing growth
- a survey of Business Improvement Districts (BIDs) demonstrating the economic importance of walking and cycling to businesses across London
- research suggesting segregated cycle routes in London make our streets more efficient.
This research shows the importance of walking and cycling to high streets and local economies, which is why TfL is working to create high streets that are designed for people, inclusive and easy to access by foot or cycle.
One way we are encouraging people to walk more is through Go Jauntly, a discovery and wayfinding app for walking. Go Jauntly, recently selected as the winner of the Mayor’s Active Travel Innovation Challenge, enables people to enjoy self-guided routes with directions, photos and facts along the way. This Christmas the app will showcase local town centres, highlighting unique shopping opportunities across London and encouraging people to shop local. The free app is available to download on the iTunes app store.
We are keen to keep you updated on the important work we are doing on Brexit, particularly in light of the huge political change we have seen recently. We want to represent your views, ideas and concerns and feed them directly in to the City’s work on influencing the terms of the UK’s exit from the EU.
There is a critical need for us to understand the position of City businesses and to help to shape and reflect those positions to policymakers. Likewise we are focussing on understanding where political and regulatory policy makers are coming from and influencing them.
Our aim is to seek to minimise any loss of business from the City by ensuring that there is a full understanding of the implications of various options and, with others, making the appropriate policy representations. We also seek to explore and promote compensatory policy and other measures to take advantage of opportunities to increase business for the City, London and the UK as a whole.
The City Corporation is working closely with TheCityUK and the International Regulatory Strategy Group. We are also fully engaged in the various industry fora.
The following questions are pertinent. Please let us have your views on these, or any other aspect:
- What can we do to minimise business moving away from the City as a result of the current uncertainty?
- What can we do to attract more new business into the City?
- Are there any specific areas that we should be seeking to promote (Fintech and green finance are obvious examples, where we are already very active)?
- What form does continued access to the Single Market need to take?
- How do we ensure that industry continues to have access to the skilled workers from EU member states it requires?
- How do we achieve stability in the regulatory environment – no major changes?
- How can we best increase business with non EU countries – noting that additional resources have been agreed to fund this work?
- What contribution can we make to counter the view outside London that London generally and the City specifically are not seen as benefitting the rest of the economy?
What can we do to counter the small but significant element of xenophobia that has been experienced in recent weeks?
A substantial increase in the Corporation’s budget to cover representational work has also been agreed, as referenced above, which will predominantly be used to:
- Build Future Products and Services: providing a stronger focus on innovative policy development to respond to new challenges and to secure the position of the City as a premier financial services centre for the future.
- Strengthen the Regulatory Framework: providing strong leadership for the City on strategic policy and regulatory issues affecting London as a financial services centre.
- Promote Exports and Investment: developing a new approach to provide attractive customer service for businesses served by the Corporation’s trade and investment work.
Please do contact the Members with any suggestions or concerns.
Alderman Michael Mainelli
Common Councilmen John Bennett, John Scott and Chris Hayward.
As your elected representatives we want to ensure that the City Corporation plays a full and proactive role in securing the best exit terms possible, representing the interests of all of London’s stakeholders, including yours. Please contact us if there are any specific aspects that you would like us to put forward on your behalf. The City’s position:
“The City of London has thrived as a financial and trading centre for more than a thousand years and will continue to do so.
“There will be no mass exit of banks and financial institutions from the Square Mile.
“While there will be uncertainty as Brexit negotiations go on we are still the financial centre of the fifth-largest economy in the world.
“The task now is to respect the will of the British people and secure the best deal we can in the negotiations that will follow this vote.
“Financial services contribute £66.5bn in taxes to the Treasury – 11% of total government receipts – and City businesses we have consulted believe they must be allowed access to the single market without discrimination.
“Financial and professional services account for 2.1million jobs in the UK – 7.2% of workers – and City businesses I have consulted believe we must be allowed to trade with passporting rights with the 27 member states of the EU.
“The Government should now engage in a period of consultation to ensure we can keep creating jobs both in London and throughout the country.
“The general view of the City is that the Government should push for the UK to retain our access to the Single Market.
“Any other option will fail to provide proper arrangements for financial services and risks damaging this vital industry.
“There is also a clear view in the City of London that our labour market must be kept flexible. European nations have provided much of the highly-skilled talent we need to succeed and this level of support given to the British economy must continue.
“For our part the City of London Corporation will continue to engage with EU policy makers and continue to promote London as Europe’s international financial and business centre.
“We have had a thorough, open and democratic debate.
“All sides of this debate must now put aside their differences to do what is in the best interests of ensuring the UK remains a success on the international stage.”
We are working with other stakeholders to preserve the City’s position. The Chairman of Policy, Mark Boleat, has chaired meetings of the major trade associations and spoken with the Mayor of London and the Treasury. Further meetings are being arranged. There is common agreement on the need to maintain access to the single market. Our own Common Councilman, Chris Hayward, as Chairman of the Corporation’s Planning Committee, is meeting with the development community to reassure them and to secure continued investment in City wide projects.
The referendum decision will have significant implications for the City’s work in a number of areas.
Best wishes, Alderman Michael Mainelli, Deputy John Bennett and Common Councilmen John Scott and Chris Hayward