Business News

Edgbaston MP lands role in Sir Keir Starmer’s top Labour team

Edgbaston MP Preet Gill has been appointed to the Shadow Cabinet by new Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer. Ms Gill was announced as the

Shadow Secretary of State for International Development. She has served as MP for

Edgbaston – the constituency in which Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce is headquartered – since 2017. The former Bournville College

student is also an executive committee member for the Greater Birmingham Commonwealth Chamber of Commerce, part of the GBCC group. Following her appointment, Ms

Gill tweeted: “I am honoured to have the opportunity to work in Keir Starmer’s Shadow Cabinet as Shadow Secretary of State for International Development. “I look forward to building on the

work of Dan Carden and Kate Osamor in speaking up for the world's most marginalised and vulnerable.” Paul Faulkner, chief executive of

the GBCC, said: “We congratulate Preet on her appointment to the Shadow Cabinet. “As the Chamber’s local MP, we

have followed her meteoric rise since she was elected in 2017. “In particular, she has been a big

supporter of our Commonwealth Chamber division since it launched.”

Chamber connections (from left): Preet Gill, Steve Allen, Sir Keir Starmer and RSM’s regional boss Mark Taylor

Business leaders in Greater Birmingham have also congratulated Sir Keir on his victory in the Labour leadership election. The former Director of Public

Prosecutions and Shadow Brexit Secretary was the unanimous choice to replace Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the opposition. The Chamber welcomed Sir Keir

to Birmingham in February 2019 for roundtable Brexit talks with member businesses at the city centre offices of RSM. The visit was organised by Ms Gill. Chamber president Steve Allen

said: “We would like to congratulate Sir Keir Starmer on his victory in the Labour leadership election.

“Although the Chamber is a politically neutral organisation, we recognise the importance of both a strong Government and a strong opposition. “We were fortunate enough to

welcome Sir Keir to Birmingham last year for a roundtable discussion and we look forward to engaging with him again in the future.”

City council appoints new chief executive

Birmingham City Council has appointed Chris Naylor as its new interim chief executive. Mr Naylor, who is currently the chief executive at Barking and Dagenham Council, will be seconded to Birmingham for 12 months. He is due to take up the post this month. Cllr Ian Ward, leader of Birmingham City Council (BCC), said: “It was important for us to take the time to find the right person for Birmingham, and I know in Chris we have found that. “It is even more important that we get the appointment right now given

the challenging circumstances we all find ourselves in. The next 12 months will be some of the most demanding we have ever seen, and Chris will strengthen a team who are already working incredibly hard to support our most vulnerable during this difficult time. “This arrangement is a great reflection on how the local Government

family works together to offer mutual support, sharing the best ideas and the best people. I look forward to working with Chris and thank Barking and Dagenham for being so accommodating.” Mr Naylor is being seconded in an arrangement supported by the Local

Government Association and the Ministry of Housing Local Government and Communities. He said: “I’m going to miss Barking and Dagenham terribly, as it’s a place

like no other. But I’ve huge confidence in our brilliant leadership team to keep the show on the road and continue delivering for the borough’s residents. It’s a huge privilege to be joining BCC at this time and I’m excited to have an opportunity to help the City and its people reach their full potential.” Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce chief executive Paul


Faulkner said: “This would be an important appointment at any time but even more so right now given the Covid-19 situation. “We look forward to meeting and working closely with Chris and are sure

he will bolster the council’s leadership team, alongside Cllr Ward and deputy leader Brigid Jones who have done a fine job of leading the authority in the absence of a permanent chief executive.”

Interim boss: Chris Naylor

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