Small businesses don’t believe government is ‘fighting their corner’

Just 37% of UK businesses feel confident about the next six months, compared to the global average of 52%

63% of small businesses across the world feel ignored by the political decision making of their governments and are unaware of efforts to ‘fight their corner’, according to research from Sage.

The survey of 5,500 entrepreneurs across 19 countries also found that 61% of UK businesses consider the global economy to be less stable than six months ago, yet 40% have taken no measures to safeguard against this instability.

Just 37% of UK respondents felt positive about the next six months – compared to 52% globally – with currency fluctuations (19%), bureaucracy (16%), and lack of relevant skills and access to funding (both 11%), cited as top concerns.

38% of UK firms said Brexit will negatively impact their business, compared to 35% who expect a positive outcome, while 49% believe export opportunities and grants are the best way for the government to support small business.

Jacqueline de Rojas, Sage’s Northern Europe managing director, said: “Entrepreneurs and business builders are the powerhouse of the UK economy.  But the research is telling us that a lack of stability is having a negative impact on their confidence, and potential currency fluctuations over the next six months could prove to be a significant barrier going into 2017.

“We believe that by giving these businesses a voice, like we have today in Ireland, and encouraging them to embrace technology and the cloud, they will be far better equipped to negotiate the changing landscape whatever changes a post-Brexit world brings.”

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