Ukip has appointed an IFA as a key economic adviser as the party calls on advisers to bring forward their ideas for its election manifesto.
Mark Hughes Associates IFA Mark Hughes, who is a Ukip MEP candidate for the East of England, will advise newly appointed Ukip economic spokesman Steven Woolfe.
Hertfordshire-based Hughes is a sole trader advising clients in the South-east of England. City barrister Woolfe is general counsel for Mercury Jove Advisers, which acts as a regulatory and legal expert for asset managers, private equity firms and property developers.
Woolfe replaces MEP Godfrey Bloom, who was sacked from the party after hitting a journalist and calling a roomful of women “sluts” at last year’s party conference.
Woolfe is calling on advisers to propose ideas for regulatory change in Ukip’s manifesto for the 2015 general election.
Speaking to Money Marketing this week, he said: “Mark knows what it is like to run an independent financial advice business and he knows the difficulties and challenges of regulation. He will look at the impact of regulation on smaller firms like his own. He will be able to speak to people in the industry and ask them what they would like to see change.
“We have an open forum and that includes IFAs so I would like them to tell us what is wrong and what needs to change. I am going to listen to them.”
Woolfe said Ukip would focus on cutting the burden of FCA and EU red tape for small firms and repeal the RDR.
He said: “The RDR has really hurt small and medium-sized businesses. It has seen the closure of large numbers of small firms and the amalgamation of entities. It has given more jobs to regulators, compliance officers and lawyers but has it really helped consumers? Lots of people are not getting access to advice.”
Your Mortgage Decisions director Dominik Lipnicki says: “It is astounding that the Government and previous government never had client-facing intermediaries as economic advisers. It is a very good thing and adds credibility to Ukip.”