Now that the Conservative Party has won a clear majority, business leaders want to make sure the new government sticks to its pledges.
During the election campaign, the Tories committed to helping small businesses by:
- Ending the late payment crisis by introducing a reform package put on pause by the election.
- Helping small firms with spiralling labour costs and expected Living Wage rises by increasing the Employment Allowance.
- Extending and expanding existing business rates discounts, while launching a review aimed at reducing the financial burden of rates.
- Launching a self-employment review to help those struggling to access pensions and mortgages.
- Improving infrastructure, with an ambition to deliver full-fibre, gigabit broadband and investing £2 billion to fill in potholes that blight UK roads.
The Federation of Small Businesses’ chairman Mike Cherry commented: “After more than three years of Brexit absorbing government bandwidth, the Conservative Party has pledged to tackle the many domestic challenges that have been neglected during that time.
“Small businesses the length and breadth of the UK will be looking to the new Government to achieve positive change for small firms in its first 100 days, not least with publication of a pro-business Budget in early February.
“The restoration of small business confidence and trust in politics rests on seeing the Conservatives’ pledges to us swiftly enshrined in a programme for government. It’s now time to turn kind words on bread and butter issues facing the small business community into tangible action.
“This government needs to deliver a business-friendly Brexit. That means one that protects the three t’s: trade, talent and a proper transition. The third of those is absolutely critical. We have to avoid a scenario where we suddenly crash out of the EU with no time for small firms to prepare for what’s coming next.”
Surges in the pound and FTSE indexes
Luke Davis, CEO of IW Capital, an investment house that funds small businesses, said: “Investors and entrepreneurs will be pleased to see this result – not least because Labour pledged to raise both income and corporation taxes. The surges in both the pound and FTSE indexes that we have already seen show the confidence in the Tories being the party of business and progress. The talent and drive in the SME sector is already there – now they should have the confidence to achieve their goals.”
“What SMEs will want to see now is certainty around leaving the EU so that they can grow and scale with confidence. There is a tremendous amount of ambition in the small business community and especially in innovative entrepreneurs – we hope to see the Tory government support this community.”
Jenny Tooth, CEO of the UK Business Angels Association, said: “We can only hope that the government will continue to support the angel and early stage investment community across the UK and will recognise the important role that we play in backing innovation and growth.”