Prime Minister's Office, 10 Downing Street
A Number 10 spokesperson said:
The Prime Minister this afternoon chaired the first meeting of the new business council at Downing Street.
The Prime Minister emphasised her desire to listen to the views of businesses, to channel their experience and to share with them the governments vision for a successful Brexit and a country in which growth and opportunity is shared by everyone across the whole of the UK.
On Brexit, the Prime Minister reiterated that the Governments overarching goal is for a smooth, orderly exit culminating in a comprehensive free trade deal with the EU, with a period of implementation in order to avoid any cliff-edges.
The Prime Minister welcomed the valuable contributions which have come from discussions with businesses at various levels of government over the past year, including on the development of a modern industrial strategy, and emphasised the need for this engagement to intensify over the period ahead.
Beyond Brexit, the Prime Minister committed to using this forum to focus on wider issues of importance to the UK economy.
The council discussed the importance of steps that can be taken to boost productivity, drive investment and keep our economy strong. They also discussed ways to build business and consumer confidence, and strengthen the positive role of business within society.
The Prime Minister looked forward to using future quarterly meetings to hear from as wide a variety of voices as possible to ensure the interests of those who work across a range of sectors can be represented.