Entrepreneurs on the Defensive
The setting up of the Industrial Policy Group in 1968 and its ultimate demise in 1974 may be only a minor event in the economic upheavals of the period, yet the life story of what was in some ways a unique experiment has some light to throw upon the fundamental causes of our economic troubles. The Group was created through the initiative of Sir Paul Chambers who became the first Chairman with Mr Arthur Shenfield acting as its Director. Its constitution was of the simplest. The Group was a club, necessarily limited in size by the manner in which it was to operate. It was to consist of 20 to 25 members each of whom was the head of a large corporation.1 The members made no special effort to create a balanced representation of the British economy. Most of their companies were manufacturing, although building, distribution and finance were represented. Many of the companies were multinational; a number of them long before detractors had even recognised that there were such things in the world. It was intended that the membership of the Group should change from time to time. In one sense this was inevitable — for the heads of large companies normally serve in that capacity only for a spell before retirement. In any case, in a group of limited size it was recognised that some rotation of experience and interest was an advantage.
KeywordsTrade Union Government Expenditure Money Supply Private Enterprise Resale Price Maintenance
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