Former business advisor to Prime Minister David Cameron Brian Binley MP yesterday called on government to do more to meet the needs of SMEs during a conference in Melton Mowbray.
Speaking at the conference, Mr Binley argued that regardless of the importance of cutting the deficit, ensuring that efforts are made to cut red tape and supporting growth in the sector is crucial. The conference was organised by research and development company Pera and was centred on the problem of how to drive growth through innovation.
Highlighting the fact that 99.9% of firms in the UK are classed as SMEs and that 60% of the UK’s 23 million strong private sector work force are located within SMEs, Binley also made it clear that as someone who had started up his own business, he knew of the challenges and obstacles that small businesses faced.
“It is absolutely right for the Government to cut the deficit that ballooned under the last administration. [However], alongside deficit reduction the Government must do more to grow the economy,” he said.
David Cameron appointed Binley as a business advisor in 2007 to lead a commission with the purpose of finding out about the future of businesses on the High Street.
Lord Digby Jones also highlighted that UK firms are missing out on millions of pounds worth of EU cash: “UK firms spent less on research and development than either Germany or France. In 2007 before the banking crisis, Germany spent Eu62bn, France Eu39bn and Britain just Eu37bn.”