SMEs outline business wish list from government

Posted on 16 Jul 2015 by The Manufacturer

More than a quarter (27%) of SMEs in the manufacturing industry say that the most positive thing the new government could do for them would be to reduce regulation and red tape.

This is according to the findings of the latest Close Brothers Business Barometer, a quarterly survey of SMEs that canvasses their opinion on a range of financial and economic issues.

The survey also found that 21% of manufacturers polled would like the government to offer more help to access finance, while 16% think a freeze on business rates would be the most beneficial type of support. A further 14% cited more action on late payments as the thing they’d most like to see from the government.

Steve Gee, Managing Director of the Industrial Equipment Division at Close Brothers Asset Finance.
Steve Gee, Managing Director of the Industrial Equipment Division, Close Brothers Asset Finance.

Commenting, managing director of the Industrial Equipment Division at Close Brothers Asset Finance, Steve Gee said: “We understand that many manufacturers feel that they face excessive legislation, especially when it comes to new business proposals, and that the issue could hamper their competitiveness in the global marketplace.

“The burden of legislation is often cited as a barrier to growth and so it’s not surprising that manufacturers have named a reduction in red tape as the most pressing issue for the government to address to promote sustainable private sector growth.”

More than two fifths (44%) of businesses surveyed in the industry state that trading conditions for their business are improving, with 37% expecting to expand in the next 12 months.

Gee added: “The second quarter of this year has seen a slowdown in manufacturing output, so while confidence may be high, it’s as important as ever to ensure this vital industry is supported if Great Britain is to remain a key player in global manufacturing.”