THE first female head of the Essex Chambers of Commerce’s first public statement has been a comment on the Government's budget cuts.

Denise Rossiter, who officially takes over as chief executive officer on November 17, described the cuts as “tough, but inevitable”.

She said: “Essex Chambers has been anticipating this programme for two to three years.

“While it’s punishing in the short term for the public sector, it had to be done to rebalance the economy, with the emphasis on developing entrepreneurial skills.”

The Government expects the private sector to compensate for public sector redundancies by creating more than a million jobs in the next four years, something Mrs Rossiter said the private sector in Essex was “up for”.

She added: “We have had comfortable years and now are moving into leaner, more challenging times. Hard work will replace self-indulgence. There is a feeling among our members we can live up to the challenge, and the change could do us all good.”

Essex Chambers also welcomed David Cameron's pledge to cut red tape affecting small and medium firms. Mrs Rossiter said: “Pointless bureaucracy and unnecessary form filling have long been among our members’ key concerns,”