MP champions 'Real-Life Entrepreneurs'
Arundel & South Downs MP Nick Herbert met with local business owners on Friday (16 March) at a meeting organised by the Federation of Small Businesses in Storrington.
The MP also signed up to the FSB's 'Real-Life Entrepreneurs' campaign to recognise the contribution which entrepreneurs make to the UK economy and champion their cause.
The meeting gave local business owners the opportunity to speak to Mr Herbert about the issues they faced and hear how the Government was responding.
Issues raised included the need to improve broadband, the level of taxation and public spending reductions, but the issues causing the greatest concern were the burden of regulation on small businesses and continuing problems in accessing credit.
The FSB's Real Life Entrepreneurs campaign is calling for the Government to increase the routes to finance, improve cash-flow, adopt a new approach to regulation, reduce and simplify business tax, incentivise job creation, and open up export markets.
Mr Herbert said that he was strongly sympathetic to the concerns of small businesses. He set out the range of Government polices to back local entrepreneurs, including:
- Lower taxes: corporation tax has been cut and is now the lowest in the G7; the small business rate relief holiday has been extended until September 2012; and National Insurance discounts are available to start-ups in many areas of the country.
- Less regulation and fewer regulators: micro businesses and new start-ups will be exempt from all new domestic regulation for three years.
- Improved access to finance: the new National Loan Guarantee scheme will allow banks to raise up to £20 billion to lend to smaller businesses at a lower cost. The Government has also introduced a £2.5 billion Business Growth Fund to back established and growing business.
- Local economic development: local enterprise partnerships, like Coast to Capital are helping to foster locally-driven economic development. 24 new enterprise zones will now be able to offer discounted business rates, simplified planning and high speed broadband. The injection of a further £1 billion into the Regional Growth Fund which will support areas reliant on public sector employment make the transition to private-sector led growth.
Nick Herbert commented "Small businesses are the lifeblood of the economy and are vital for employment. We must do everything we can to ensure a pro-business environment, and especially to be much tougher about regulation that imposes an unnecessary burden on job and wealth creation.
"We need to be enabling entrepreneurs to get their ventures off the ground, not putting barriers in their way. That's why I was pleased to support the Federation of Small Business' Real Life Entrepreneurs Campaign."
Mr Herbert added: "Meeting with local businesses is important for me, as it gives me the opportunity to hear what the issues are and what more needs to be done to ensure business success."
Notes for Editors
- For more information on the Federation of Small Businesses please visit: www.fsb.org.uk
- For more information on the Real-Life Entrepreneurs campaign please visit: http://www.fsb.org.uk/real-life-entrepreneurs
- For more information on super-fast broadband in West Sussex, please visit: www.westsussex-betterconnected.org.uk