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The Humber Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) has been told by bankers in the region that they are “open for business”.

The LEP regularly meets with Humber bankers to exchange information and understand the business environment, as a barometer to what is happening in the local economy.

At September’s meeting it was overwhelmingly reported by the banks that in line with national growth indicators there was a greater confidence from businesses in the region, which had seen an increase in organisations making decisions to invest in developments that had previously had been held back.

The banks were all keen to say that they were open for business to help businesses to grow and wanted to break through the perceptions that banks were not lending.

Ian Millington, Director RBS Corporate Banking, Humber and North Yorkshire, said:

“We are lending, the RBS Group has a market share of 24% nationally and is lending 36% of all lending to SMEs so we are punching above our weight.

“What we want do is lend more. I think confidence is increasing but we know we have to play our part and we’re speaking to businesses every day about what we can do to help them invest to grow, which is key to the recovery of the UK economy.”

Anthony Winn, Handelsbanken Grimsby Branch Manager, said:

“We are seeing our corporate customers starting to invest in capital projects, some substantial, which has not been the case in recent years.

“Business owners appear to have restored confidence in the economy and financial outlook to invest their own cash and also borrow. Indeed in recent months the bank is experiencing and agreeing a higher volume of funding requests from our customers.”

Humber LEP Chair Lord Haskins said:

“The intelligence from the banks that there is a greater confidence for businesses to invest, which is a good sign for the local economy, is in step with what I have been hearing from businesses in the Humber.

“This has also been reflected in the increase in the number of businesses applying to us for funding to support their growth plans. Our funding through RGF and Business Loan requires match funding as well as evidence of new jobs creation.

“So I am confident that more businesses investing in developments will see more new jobs being created in the local area.”

Keely Lead

Keely is responsible for the LEP’s media and public relations activity, events, communication channels and communications with our stakeholders.