Charlie Elphicke is the Member of Parliament for Dover and Deal. Follow Charlie on Twitter.
Small businesses form the backbone of the UK’s private sector, accounting for six out of ten jobs. Yet how can we add to their number with more business start-ups?
The Government has been active in promoting new small businesses – from introducing the New Enterprise Allowance to the start up loan scheme. There has also been a marked increase in start ups and self employment. Since the election, the number of people registered as self employed has increased by 335,000, while the number of start-ups has risen from 29,193 in May 2010 to 47,500 in March 2013.
These figures are important because business start-ups matter. OECD studies have shown that business start ups play a powerful role in economic growth. Research also shows a strong relationship between the level of entrepreneurial activity in a country with economic and financial growth. Start ups are the springboard for growth, and more measures could be taken to encourage their expansion.
The Government has taken some really positive steps, yet there is scope to consider further reforms to encourage more business start ups:
A “get set and grow” scheme
The 'get set and grow' scheme would give business start ups a two year holiday from business burdens. These would include a holiday from corporation tax payments, national insurance contributions and regulatory filings together with a lighter touch employment law regime. This would be available to businesses until they have either been trading for two years, have a turnover greater than £500,000 or employ 10 or more workers.