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Confederation of British Industry

This was formed in August 1965 by a merger of the National Association of British Manufacturers with the British Employers Confederation and the Federation of British Industry. The aim was to present one face to the public on questions of labour relations. taxation, technical legislation, industrial training, management, education, public purchasing, overseas trade policy, etc. It has regional and local councils, headed by the Confederation of British Industry Council, which has monthly meetings. It is politically neutral, but represents industry in dealings with the government and attempts both to respond to and to stimulate government action, often advising on policy and legislation. It is sometimes called the employers’ Trades Union Congress. In its own words it is ‘not a sinister pressure group dominated by top tycoons who meet clandestinely to manipulate the reins of power. Essentially a democratic organization, it draws its strength from the grass roots of industry, from firms of all shapes and sizes. in all kinds of manufacturing enterprise, in consultation with them and with their trade associations, puts forward views and policies not only in their interest, but also in what it feels to be the national interest’. Membership includes manufacturing firms. trade associations, employer organizations and commercial associations – not only large companies. Regional councils deal with local industrial problems. Experts are employed to give free advice to members on all matters connected with industry, including taxation, rating and valuation, company and mercantile law, town and country planning, fuel economy, clean air and noise abatement and trade effluent disposal. Also, in the export field, advice on markets. distribution, agents, customers, tariffs. etc.

Membership is open to all companies engaged in productive or manufacturing industry in Great Britain, or in construction and transport, and to national employers’ federations, national trade associations. etc. Associate membership is open to nationalized industries and commercial asstKiations. Subscriptions vary according to the number of persons employed in the member firm.

Reference: The Penguin Business Dictionary, 3rd edt.