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Monday, 10 September, 2001, 06:07 GMT 07:07 UK
CBI says DTI is too weak
Car production line
CBI: Business needs better backing from government
British business is not getting the backing it needs from government, partly because the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) is not tough in standing up to other ministries, according to the Confederation of British Industry (CBI).

The DTI is not doing enough to push "the wealth creation message", said Digby Jones, CBI director general, speaking on BBC Radio 4's Today programme.

He said the CBI is happy so far with trade minister Patricia Hewitt, who was appointed in May, and had written to the DTI because the government department had asked for its views.

The DTI puts too much energy into regulation and red tape, said Mr Jones.

"We feel that is the one department that has the opportunity to really push the wealth creation message in government...and frankly we do need much more championing of the business message within government and not so much of the hand of regulation", he said.

He criticised previous DTI campaigns, in particular the 'Rip-off Britain' campaign against over-pricing by companies which was launched under Mrs Hewitt's predecessor, Stephen Byers.

The employers' organisation is hoping the DTI will now "go more down the championing side, especially with those ministries that have other agendas", said Mr Jones.

In its letter to the ministry, the CBI said the DTI's mission statement was "vague and without content".

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Digby Jones, Director-General of the CBI
"We do need someone in government that can do the job"
CBI's economic committee chairman Nick Reilly
"Confidence is still weak"
Chief Economist with KPMG, Vicky Price
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