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The Labour Party is launching a new drive to get individuals with a background in business to seek selection as candidates including for Parliamentary and council seats, Ed Miliband will announce at the party’s Annual Business Reception tomorrow evening (Tuesday 17 July).

More than five hundred representatives of the business world are due to attend the event, which is being held at the Chartered Accountants Hall of the ICAEW in the City of London.

A special stream of the party’s Future Candidates Programme will be launched for applicants with business backgrounds. This will involve matching applicants with a mentor who is a senior Labour representative, for example an MP.

This will complement the representatives of business already in Labour’s ranks in Parliament and elsewhere. Every member of Labour’s shadow Business, Innovation and Skills team in the House of Commons has worked in business or run their own firm.

Potential applicants do not need to be Labour Party members to apply, but they should share Labour values and be willing to join if selected to take part in the programme.

Chuka Umunna MP, Labour’s Shadow Business Secretary, said:

“Our party – all parties in fact – must reflect what Britain looks like and the jobs which people do.

“Not only do we want more people setting up businesses, leading businesses and working in businesses, we want more people from the world of business in our ranks - from our councillors to our MPs. There are some already: like our MPs in the shadow Business team; all of whom have set up and run businesses or worked for business, but we need more.

“We know many people who go into business share our values: hard work, contributing to society, creating something from nothing, creating jobs, creating value. This is why we want to bolster the number of people from business in our ranks and from different walks of business life – from entrepreneurs to engineers, manufacturers to media marketers, architects to analysts, retailers to recruiters.

“This initiative follows the establishment last year by Labour of NG: Next Generation, the party’s entrepreneurs network.”

Click here to find out more about Labour's Future Candidates Programme

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