Small business responds to Budget

The Forum of Private Business (FPB) has released a scathing response to yesterday’s Budget, M&A's Paul Driscoll reports


The Forum of Private Business (FPB) has released a scathing response to yesterday’s Budget, M&A’s Paul Driscoll reports

The Forum of Private Business (FPB) has released a scathing response to yesterday’s Budget, branding the measures at improving small businesses “negligible”.

In a ballot conducted by the FPB, an overwhelming 97 per cent of small businesses voted that tax changes have made the UK “a worse place in which to do business.”

FPB’s chief executive Phil Orford commented: “This Budget is more about what has not been done to help smaller businesses, rather than an announcement of any genuinely proactive and positive measures”

Orford also pointed out that although the chancellor has proclaimed the UK’s corporation tax is the lowest in the G7, the smaller duty paid by smaller firms is set to rise to 22 per cent by April 2009.

He added: “While there are some welcome initiatives, they do little, if anything, to offset the tax burden due to be implemented in April. The chancellor has missed a golden opportunity to convince the small business community that he is on their side.”

The FPB also lambasted the government’s decision to go ahead with removing capital gains tax taper and indexation relief next month, stating: “Measures to sweeten the blow will be negligible compared to the cumulative tax burden that smaller businesses are facing.”

The Federation of Small Business was slightly less critical of the budget, with its chairman, John Wright, adding: “The Treasury’s dithering since the Pre-Budget report and a series of damaging tax rises in the last year have totally undermined the government’s position with small businesses.

Alistair Darling’s first Budget is unlikely to make the tax situation much better, but it is a relief that it will not make it any worse either. Finally it seems we may have an announcement from the chancellor that doesn’t spring any nasty surprises on small businesses.”

Marc Barber

Raven Connelly

Marc was editor of GrowthBusiness from 2006 to 2010. He specialised in writing about entrepreneurs, private equity and venture capital, mid-market M&A, small caps and high-growth businesses.

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