A NORTHUMBERLAND MP is the latest to sign up to a national campaign to help boost small businesses.
Wansbeck MP Ian Lavery is joining the Real Life Entrepreneurs’ Campaign, which is run by the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) to demonstrate the importance of ordinary people who have taken the risk and started their own business.
Ted Salmon, FSB North East Regional chairman, said: “We are delighted that Ian Lavery has signed up as a Real Life Entrepreneur champion in Westminster.
“Pushing the Government to tackle issues such as late payment and access to finance will ensure that real life entrepreneurs are able to grow and prosper.
“We both recognise the hard work that Wansbeck’s real life entrepreneurs do for the local area and with more support will help the local economy to grow.” The campaign aims to help small businesses to prosper by persuading the Government to remove some of the barriers to growth such as improving routes to finance, simplifying the tax system, tackling late payment and incentivising job creation among smaller firms.
Mr Lavery said: “Small businesses play an important role in our communities and make a significant contribution to the local economy.
“I am pleased to add my support to the FSB campaign and hope this will assist small businesses in Wansbeck and encourage and enable more real life entrepreneurs.”
FSB research shows that a third of entrepreneurs see red tape as the single biggest obstacle to growth but the UK ranks 89th out of 139 countries for the burden it places on business, according to the World Economic Forum’s Global competitiveness report.
It also pointed out that around seven out of 10 small businesses have received late payments, of which two-thirds lost £5,000 or more.
To tackle this, the campaign is demanding that all public-sector agencies pay invoices within 10 days and that sub-contractors are set a specific period in which to pay, or be excluded from future contracts.
It urged local authorities to agree to a similar deal.
Nearly a third of FSB members said reducing National Insurance would be an incentive to create jobs, while 11% also supported an extension of the NI holiday initiative.
FSB national chairman John Walker said: “We need to create an atmosphere of entrepreneurship that seeps into every part of our society and makes the proposition of setting up and running a business a realistic prospect for anyone with a good idea.
“There is much that the FSB is already doing to identify, nurture and support entrepreneurs but also much that UK governments can do to help.”