The Political Practice of Local Capitalist Association: Roger King
Unlike the Chambers of Commerce movement the CBI's representational strength is at national level where it has established close ties with government. Funded and chiefly operated by big industrial companies the CBI has had difficulty in keeping small business members while its larger members baulk at closer relations with retailers, although they are less sensitive about big retailers who are often also manufacturers (Grant and Marsh, 1977, p.40). However, as was noted earlier (see Grant, chapter 4 in this volume), the CBI has sought recently to further strengthen its regional organisation, to become more involved in local politics, and to attain closer links with Chambers of Commerce at regional level. Many of the 800 or so trade associations and employers' organisations which draw membership from an individual industry or sub-industry and bargain over wages and working conditions, unlike Chambers of Commerce, belong to the CBI.