From the top · 10 January 2018

Andrew Griffiths MP appointed small business minister

Andrew Griffiths
Griffiths worked at his family’s engineering firm before becoming an MP

Theresa May has appointed Andrew Griffiths as the country’s new small business minister at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).

The MP for Burton replaces Margot James, who’s been promoted to become a minister of state at the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS).

Prior to being elected to parliament in 2010, Griffiths worked for his family’s engineering business in the West Midlands, before going to work for Leeds Permanent Building Society (which later became Halifax).

In politics, Griffiths’ previous roles include chief of staff to both Theresa May and Eric Pickles MP. He has also worked in the European Parliament, where he was an advisor on farming for the Conservative Party.

Commenting on his appointment, Griffiths wrote on Twitter: “Thrilled to be appointed small business minister.. Representing Burton and Uttoxeter will always be my first priority but I look forward to getting started on the business brief.”

The appointment follows two days of dramatic ministerial reshuffling, during which health secretary Jeremy Hunt refused to move roles and education secretary Justine Greening quit the government altogether.

Business secretary Greg Clarke has kept the top job at BEIS, despite rumours the prime minister wanted him to move. It was reported that Clarke was due to be offered the role of health secretary until Hunt refused to switch.

James has replaced Matthew Hancock in her new role at DCMS. Hancock, himself a former small business minister, has been promoted to become secretary of state in DCMS.

Read more: Industrial Strategy sets out long-term vision for UK growth

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ABOUT THE EXPERT

Fred Heritage is deputy editor at Business Advice. He has a BA in politics and international relations from the University of Kent and an MA in international conflict from Kings College London. He previously worked as a reporter at Global Trade Review magazine.

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