Small firms need to see action on Autumn Statement promises

Small businesses need to see action on the initiatives outlined in the Autumn Statement, according to the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB).

The call comes as the latest 'Voice of Small Business' Index revealed that confidence amongst small businesses plummeted in 2011.

The Index also revealed that a number of businesses expect the economic situation to worsen before it gets better, which is why the FSB is calling on the Government to act on the policies and initiatives that have already been announced.

These include measures to encourage bank lending to small businesses and boost investment in business through the seed enterprise investment scheme, as well as proposed reforms to the planning system, and Government procurement contracts.

Falling inflation should also have a positive impact on smaller businesses, and recent energy price cuts look promising.

Commenting, John Walker, National Chairman, Federation of Small Businesses, said: "The message is clear - things are going to get worse before they get better. But, we are hopeful that as the inflationary pressures lessen in 2012, that businesses will become more confident. There are some good policy proposals in the pipeline too. However, the Government needs to quickly put in place the actions that it has promised. Small firms have heard what the Government has to say but are still waiting to see implementation. We believe that must be the Government's priority: to make 2012 the year of doing, with the aim of creating a dynamic business landscape in which our entrepreneurs can grow and flourish."