One of Britain's most influential businesswomen has said the government should invest in "world-class infrastructure" and increase the rate of immigration in order to boost the economy.

Carolyn Fairbairn, who took over as the director general of the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) last month, made the comments in her first keynote speech to the organisation on Monday.

Talking up the importance of fast-growing medium-sized businesses to the economy, Fairbairn highlighted the need for less stringent regulation on employment visas so companies could move workers between their international offices more easily.

Firstly, skills and access to talent. Our companies are facing a serious skills shortage across many sectors: computer science, engineering, design, advanced manufacturing.

We do need to take urgent action to solve the problem.

As well as critiquing the new apprenticeships scheme laid out in the Autumn Statement, Fairbairn explained that the CBI will be calling on the government to lift the cap on the number of non-EU migrants who can enter the UK each year, to invest in more infrastructure and to de-regulate taxes.

We'll be calling for the Tier 2 Visa Cap to be lifted to enable [businesses] to bring in the best talent from around the world.

We will also be putting a big focus on world-class infrastructure: road, rail, aviation, broadcast.

The UK stands 24th in the world for the quality of its infrastructure even though we have the fifth largest economy.

You can listen to Fairbairn's keynote speech here:

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