Sajid Javid: What the new business secretary has planned for maternity leave, strikes, the EU referendum and the BBC licence fee

Javid sets out his plans 24 hours after taking office

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Sajid Javid, the former banker appointed by David Cameron to be business secretary, has set out his plans for office.

Javid replaces Vince Cable in the new Cabinet, beating Matthew Hannock, a former business minister, to become the key link between the government and business.

This is what he told the BBC's Today programme, 24 hours after taking office:


“During the election campaign we talked about priorities… making sure people have dignity doing their jobs, security and a pay packet to help finance childcare... These are the things we are focused on doing.”

“We want to create 2 million more jobs in the next five years and 3 million more apprenticeships.”


“I believe passionately in free enterprise, that free enterprise is the lifeblood of any successful economy. My decisions for creating more jobs… crating investment in the economy will be looking towards free enterprise and what more deregulation we can have.”

“What we do know is that sometimes when government creates new rules and regulations they make things worse not better. We are clearly on the side of business and as a government we can help make a better environment for business because it’s those businesses by and large that create jobs.”

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Striking workers protest government spending cuts, July 2014

Strike Laws

“We’ve already make clear that in strike laws will significant changes; thresholds for turnout at 50% of those entitled to vote and when it comes to essential public services at least 40% must vote for strike action.

“We will also ban the use of agency staff when strike action takes place and we’ll go in to that in more detail in the Queen’s speech.”

Youth Unemployment

“Some of these we will be announcing in coming days as well as cuts to youth employment. Every young person between 18 and 21 will have their benefits changed from jobseekers to youth benefits.”

“[Young people] will have to take up apprenticeships and community work if they want to keep receiving [benefits].”

David Cameron hopes to renegotiate the terms of Britain's relationship with the EU, to give himself an advantage in the proposed EU referendum in 2017

EU Referendum

“One thing is certain and that is that it will happen before the end of 2017 and it will be a straight in-out referendum and before then we will have a renegotiation… and whatever outcome of that renegotiation a referendum will happen.”

“I’m very optimistic about the renegotiation because the Prime Minister has proven over the last year that he has been successful in dealing with our European partners. Once that process is over everyone especially the British people can make their decision.”

BBC Licence Fee

“Every 10 years  there is a Charter review process when the BBC charter is looked at afresh. That process is now starting… and is driven by evidence at every stage.”

“I think it’s time to have a charter review process. When it comes to long term funding of the BBC with the changes in the broadcasting environment it’s sensible to look at that and make sure the BBC is on a sustainable long term funding arrangement. John [Whittingdale, new culture secretary] is just right person for that job.”