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28 March 2014

The Chancellor celebrates small businesses at FSB's 40th Anniversary in Manchester

Reference number: PR 2014 17

FSB News Release
PR 2014 17
Under strict embargo until 00.01, Friday 28 March 2014

The Chancellor celebrates small businesses at FSB''s 40th Anniversary in Manchester

Marking the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) 40th anniversary year, Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne will take to the stage to address hundreds of FSB members at its annual National Conference in Manchester (today) where he will highlight the importance of small businesses to the economic recovery.

His arrival at the FSB National Conference comes as the UK''s leading business organisation revealed its pioneering ‘Voice of Small Business'' survey. In this, almost 9,000 FSB members discuss increased confidence and their growth aspirations for 2014. The results show more than half of small firms want to invest, create jobs and deliver a thriving UK economy. However, economic conditions remain challenging, and our members underline how vital it is that the Government provides support and the right environment to build on their optimism.

Last week the Chancellor announced a Budget for "a resilient economy". Measures in the Budget offered a clear signal for businesses to grow, through the increased annual investment allowance, a focus on manufacturing, support for exporters and announcements addressing concerns in the energy market. Members will be keen to hear these messages reiterated when the Chancellor stands up to deliver his political speech this morning.

In addition to the Chancellor, the Rt Hon Ed Miliband MP will speak at the Conference, outlining what a future Labour Government would do to support small firms. The hundreds of FSB members in attendance will also hear from the Minister for Skills and Enterprise, Matthew Hancock MP supported by Shadow Small Business Minister, Toby Perkins MP.

John Allan, National Chairman, Federation of Small Businesses said:
"We are delighted to be welcoming the Chancellor to our 40th anniversary – a special event not just for our members but the 4.9 million businesses we represent across the UK. Having both the Chancellor and the Labour leader Ed Miliband here today underlines again the importance of small firms to the economy and how the FSB is firmly the ‘go to'' voice for small and medium sized businesses."

Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, said:
"The success of small businesses is key to this Government''s long term economic plan, and the optimism about 2014 in the FSB''s members'' survey is testament to the decisions this Government has taken. But the job is not yet done.

"That is why next week we are introducing the Employment Allowance - a £2,000 cashback on jobs for every small business - and doubling the annual investment allowance. We are also providing more grants for small business to hire apprentices, as well as capping business rates and from next year abolishing National Insurance Contributions on under 21s altogether. This way more small firms can invest, create jobs and help deliver a more resilient economy."
 
ENDS
Notes to Editors

ISDN facilities are available for broadcast media interviews

1. The FSB National Conference takes place on 27 to 29 of March 2014 at Manchester Central, Petersfield, Manchester. More information is available at http://www.fsb.org.uk/conference2014
2. The FSB is the UK''s leading business organisation with around 200,000 members. It exists to protect and promote the interests of the UK''s Real-Life Entrepreneurs, and all those who run their own business. More information is available at www.fsb.org.uk

Media contacts:

Liesl Smith: 020 7592 8128 / 07917 628926 liesl.smith@fsb.org.uk
James Gribben: 020 7592 8121 / 07854 987974 james.gribben@fsb.org.uk
Lucy Bell-Reeves: 020 7592 8116 / 07525 801773 lucy.bell-reeves@fsb.org.uk
For regional FSB contacts please go to www.fsb.org.uk/regions