In its Budget submission, the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) has urged Chancellor Jeremy Hunt to use the 2023 Spring Budget to ‘bring forward bold measures’ that drive economic growth, create job opportunities and foster a business-friendly environment.
The business group is calling on the government to scrap business rates for firms in properties with a rateable value of up to £25,000 a year; delay the decision to slash Research & Development (R&D) tax relief; make sure small businesses can access energy efficiency technologies; and increase the employers’ Employment Allowance in line with the National Living Wage (NLW).
The FSB’s recommendations come as its latest Small Business Index survey showed that business confidence is at a level almost on par with its reading during the second COVID lockdown.
Tina McKenzie, Policy Chair at the FSB, said: ‘There are far too many necessary steps for promoting economic growth that are now urgent. The Chancellor has to make significant strides on multiple areas of policy at once to deliver returns that people notice and lead to strong growth.
‘There have been very encouraging signs that Jeremy Hunt ‘gets it’ – the Budget is make or break to see if he can turn words into action. The fact there are lots of economic challenges means that there is huge opportunity for action.’