The Federation of Small Businesses has submitted its wish-list for the 2013 Budget, which is being announced on Wednesday, March 20, with business rates and small business funding reforms cornerstones of the FSB’s submission.
The FSB is lobbying the Chancellor to ensure that work to simplify the tax system is not watered down. The current proposal to allow small firms with a turnover of less than £77,000 to provide cash-based accounts is a major deregulatory step and one the FSB believes will increase compliance.
The FSB would also like to see existing schemes for investment relief pooled together in a simple one-stop-shop so that small firms know where to go for capital to invest in their business.
As revealed by the FSB’s latest ‘Voice of Small Business’ index, small firms are ambitious and want to grow but consistently cite finance and access to long term capital as key barriers. The FSB is urging the Chancellor, George Osborne, to put in place a clear plan for the recently-announced Business Bank, outlining the role the new institution will play in getting finance to small firms and how the bank will help boost competition and encourage non-bank sources of finance.
To bolster efforts to increase competition, the FSB is urging the Government to ensure the Financial Conduct Authority focuses on encouraging new entrants into the market, so that small firms have more choice between finance providers.
There is also the regular plea to hel small firms with business rates, by making the Small Business Rate Relief permanent and review on how business rates are calculated
In addition, the FSB is recommending that the Government:
- Cancels the 3p fuel duty rise planned for September 2013 and to initiate a full review of fuel prices and motoring taxation;
- Helps boost businesses cash-flow, by ensuring that when it is awarding contracts that its Tier 1 suppliers are signed up to the Prompt Payment Code and pay their supply chains quickly;
- Extends the money available through Start-up Loans scheme to help more people that struggle to access finance to start a business. The payback periods should also be extended;
- Directs Ofgem to mandate that energy companies cannot rollover a small business onto an un-negotiated contract for more than 30 days, down from the current period of 12 months;
- Extends the National Insurance Contributions holiday to all small firms across the UK with less than four staff, rather than just start-up businesses. This could create 45,000 new jobs and add £1.3 billion to the economy.
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Susie Hughes © Shout99 2013