Sharp increase in the number of small firms demanding government support

With 33% requesting VAT return to previous rate

Thirteen per cent of small and medium-sized companies would like more support from the government – more than double the number which expressed this desire in 2010.

That is the conclusion of new research from invoice finance specialists Bibby Financial Services, which shows that more and more small firms are calling on the government to act decisively to help them out.

The study found that Britain’s smaller companies would like the government to implement a number of major policy changes over the coming months.

Of the 300 small business bosses who responded to the survey, 33% said they would like the coalition to return VAT to its previous rate of 17.5% as a “matter of urgency”. In addition, 17% of firms would like the government to simplify lending criteria, in order to make access to funding easier.

Edward Rimmer, UK chief executive of Bibby, said: “It is clear from our research that (small firms) are feeling somewhat marginalised by the government and would like to see David Cameron and his ministers do more to address their specific needs.”

Rimmer noted that while initiatives such as the Business Growth Fund is “to be applauded”, more work needs to be done by the government, as this fund is only available to companies with a minimum turnover of £10m – making the fund unattainable for the majority of firms.

He added: “We will continue to support businesses across the UK but (small firms) are still quite rightly calling on the government to provide more levels of support at a time when they need it the most.”


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