Charles Roger of the Independent Print Industries Association (IPIA) was invited back to 10 Downing Street for a Business Leaders Reception by the chancellor Jeremy Hunt last month.

It’s the second time the IPIA has been invited to this event, along with two formal meetings with special advisors to the prime minister. The event on 20 December aimed to bring together representatives from key sectors of the UK economy and foster collaboration.

After Jeremy Hunt had addressed the reception, Charles met with him to discuss the projected impact of the policies announced in the Autumn Statement. The IPIA reported that Charles also impressed on the chancellor “the critical importance for print to be included in manufacturing support initiatives, such as the Energy-intensive Industries Scheme”.

Important industries

“To be invited as the chair of the IPIA to a reception hosted by the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Jeremy Hunt, is recognition of how important the print and paper industries is to the health of the UK economy,” commented Charles.

“During our conversation he was receptive to the points being put across in regards to the need for further print and paper industry support, and welcomed further representations. 

“In fact, in a broader sense it’s not the IPIA being invited, but the entire print and paper industries. Sectors such as finance, IT, life sciences, hospitality, healthcare and fast-growing entrepreneurial start-ups – to name a few – were all in attendance. This is so that the government can either learn from them, or impress upon them, strategy or policy to improve the economy.

“The reception provided a fascinating insight into how other sectors view ours. It also provided a valuable platform to raise the profile of our industry and highlight how critical it is to the functioning of so many other parts of the economy.”

Continuing to advocate in 2024

“I was immensely proud to represent our industry and the IPIA,” added Charles. “Our repeated invitations to Number 10 reflect how far we have come over the last few years – and it is very rewarding to see the hard work and perseverance of our association making an impact. 

“We will continue to advocate for policies that will address the issues reported by IPIA members, industry businesses and allied associations which are hindering our industry’s growth and long-term stability. Our work will continue in 2024 and we welcome, and would encourage, engagement from the industry to represent its interests.”