Lord Mandelson and Prisk battle over small business policy
The voices of small business rarely get heard, yet winning over the minds of SMEs will be crucial for the winning party.
The new platform, dedicated to covering all aspects of the 2010 general election party policies for small businesses, creates an arena in which real people can give real business opinions, and hear what other business owners think.
The Enterprise Manifesto
Smarta has collaborated with Enterprise UK to collect business owners’ thoughts on entrepreneurship in the UK. Businesses will be sending in their opinions ahead of the manifesto, and at the end of April, suggestions and feedback will be presented to political and business leaders.
Smarta will host a talking wall of voxpops, weekly topic discussions, live webchats enabling direct interaction with small business communities, and with live feeds from other social networking platforms, there are constant updates of election news, opinion from leading entrepreneurs, lobby groups, political journalists, and real businesses.
Smarta has also interviewed key politicians, ministers and shadow ministers with business influence.
Lord Mandelson, the First Secretary of State, told Smarta:
‘It’s been very important for us to help small businesses through the recession – and many, many more of them have survived during this recession than did either in the 1990s or the 1980s, and we’re not going to put away our support now. We know where Britain’s interests lie – it lies within our small- and medium-sized business sector, and that’s why the government’s going to stand behind them.’
However the Conservative Shadow Business Minister, Mark Prisk, criticizes Labour’s management of policy affecting small business:
“If you’re trying to run a business, what you need is clarity and certainty. My view has always been that government is there to create the right framework for business, and then not to tinker and meddle and keep changing the tax system and the regulations. If you do that, as Labour have, you make it really difficult for businesses to plan. What we want to do as Conservatives is set up the long-term framework, then have the discipline to leave businesses doing what they do best – which is to create wealth and create jobs.”
He also commented on speeding up Britain online and making businesses easier to start:
“Let’s make it easier to start up. Let’s move to a one-click online registration. Let’s make Britain the first country in which we have in which we have 100 MB superfast broadband, so businesses are online and they’re in touch. Let’s help those start-up businesses employ someone. We will make sure, under a Conservative government, that for first ten employees there will be no employer National Insurance to pay. There will be no forms to fill in for the employer and no National Insurance to pay for the first two years for the first ten employees.”
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The brain-child of entrepreneur Sháá Wasmund, Smarta.com is a free online business resource for small business owners. Supported by renowned entrepreneurs Deborah Meaden and Michael Birch, Smarta.com provides business tools and business plans as wells as a space where business owners can network and support each other and discuss business finance. Smarta has more than 1,000 guides, advice on working from home, case studies and video interviews in which leading UK entrepreneurs share their experience and knowledge. Visit www.smarta.com to learn more.