Labour is the Party of Small Business

ed in bristol
Ed Milliband wants to ‘make Labour the party of enterprise’

In his first conference speech as party leader, Ed Miliband expressed his determination to “make Labour the party of enterprise”. We’re clear that we want to see more people starting, leading and working in business across all parts of Britain, spurring private and public sector growth.

Labour has energetically pursued this goal: we’ve set up an entrepreneurs’ network Next Generation, to support and showcase the best of British innovation, new business ideas and inspirational business leaders. We helped establish Small Business Saturday, the largest celebration of small business the country has seen, which saw £500m of spending driven into the pockets of small firms.

Labour’s policy development process, have been led by business people such as our Small Business Taskforce. Such as Jaguar Land Rover’s Executive Director Mike Wright who is leading a review on strengthening manufacturing supply chains. Labour has engaged with thousands of businesses and business organisations across the country on our policies.

Ensuring access to finance

Sedgemoor Labour leader Cllr Mick Lerry
Sedgemoor Labour Leader Cllr Mick Lerry “looking forward to continuing those conversations with business people across Bridgwater and West Somerset”

Cllr Mick Lerry said: “The next Labour government is determined to take an active role in supporting businesses as they face tough challenges such as ensuring they get access to the finance they need”.

 “Business owners consistently say that a barrier to growth is the difficulty in getting finance. According to the Bank of England, net lending to business fell by £3.4bn in the last quarter, with lending to small firms down by £500m. While business lending remains sluggish despite the government’s numerous failed schemes such as Project Merlin and Credit Easing, Germany saw increased lending during the global downturn. This is because it has a local banking system to support small business, run by managers with real autonomy to lend in the local economies, whose needs they serve and understand”, says Mick.

Mick knows: “That’s why the next Labour Government will put in place a proper British Investment Bank supported by a network of local banks. We also need more competition within banking through more challenger banks and more peer-to-peer lending”.

Employers of all sizes in Bridgwater and West Somerset Constituency tell me that the skills system needs reforming, to provide the pipeline of talent which business and industry need, to boost the number of high-skilled, better-paid jobs.

Rebalancing Britain’s economy

 “Labour would put employers in the driving seat through rigorous new standards so that all apprenticeships last a minimum of two years and are at level three, and all young people will study English and Maths to eighteen. We will also introduce a new Technical Baccalaureate for 16-19 year olds, a gold-standard vocational qualification. The next Labour Government will work with companies and universities to develop new Technical Degrees. For the first time, young people will have the chance to earn while they learn at university, with a degree that provides a clear route to a high-skilled technical or professional career”, says Mick.

Rebalancing Britain’s economy means, tackling long-term challenges and working with businesses of all sizes to make it happen. That’s why in July we brought together hundreds of business leaders at our Inclusive Prosperity conference to discuss how best we can work to take forward that shared vision.

Cllr Mick Lerry said: “As we look ahead to next year’s general election, I’m looking forward to continuing those conversations with business people across Bridgwater and West Somerset”.

Cllr Mick Lerry-Leader of the Labour Group on Sedgemoor District Council

Labour Parliamentary Candidate for Bridgwater and West Somerset

Mobile: 07775905080



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