Enterprise

West Sussex County Times Article

I was delighted to hear this week that a West Sussex resident, Lord Young of Graffham, was appointed to advise the Prime Minister on enterprise.

As a leading businessman and former Trade and Industry Secretary under Margaret Thatcher, David Young's experience speaks for itself.

He's just published an excellent report for the Government on tackling the compensation culture.

If you're a fan of daytime TV - and I'm definitely not - you'll have seen the adverts for "no win, no fee" deals that encourage people to sue at the drop of a hat.  Lord Young says we should restrict this kind of advertising.

And as well as making it easier for teachers to take children on school trips and more difficult for councils to ban events on health and safety grounds, Lord Young proposes to cut the bureaucracy that burdens small businesses.

According to the Institute of Directors, red tape costs business about £80 billion a year.  And in Sussex regulation introduced since 1998 has cost businesses £2.6 billion.  Four years ago I introduced my own Bill in the Commons to tackle this problem by exempting the smallest businesses from regulation altogether.

Lord Young's new role will ensure that the vital contribution made by small and medium sized businesses is recognised at the heart of Government.

His first task will be to write a "brutally honest" report examining how Whitehall departments interact with and affect small businesses.

The report will look at access to finance, opening up government procurement to small businesses and breaking down barriers to growth.

The aim is to change what David Cameron described this week as a culture of government that has been "institutionally biased" against small business.

As Paul Reed, managing director of the Dark Star Brewery said to me when I visited them in Partridge Green on Friday, it is small businesses that drive our economy.

They provide nearly 60 per cent of our jobs and half of our GDP.

The Coalition Government has already taken action to back small businesses, including 'one-in one-out' rules for new regulations, an approach which has been welcomed by Sussex Enterprise.

Now we must do more to make Britain one of the best places in the world to start up and run a small business.


Document type

Articles

Published

4 November 2010

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