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The Issue

Since the introduction of devolved governments for Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and London, debate has continued about how best to balance power between Westminster and other parts of the UK. Boosting economic growth is often at the heart of these discussions and we need to ensure that the role of small businesses in the economy is considered, including opportunities for growth and the potential for additional burdens.

We maintain a neutral position on devolution but want to ensure small businesses have the right information about what change might mean for them.

Actions FSB has taken

  • Played a key role across the UK in successive discussions and consultations by government about devolution.
  • Maintained a neutral position about different constitutional options but made the case for small businesses by highlighting opportunities and threats, as well as ensuring the right information about change has been available to small businesses.

Our Goal

To ensure the voice of small businesses are heard across the UK as the debate about devolution continues.

Achievements in...



  • In 2014 we conducted the biggest survey of Scottish small businesses ahead of the independence referendum.

  • We then published a guide to the referendum for small businesses, which was described as ‘indispensable’ by members.

  • Following the outcome of the referendum, we urged both the Scottish and UK Government to ensure that the new devolution settlement focused on driving economic growth.

  • We continue to represent the interests of small businesses in discussions about the introduction of new tax powers for Scotland - making it clear that any changes must not increase red tape for employers.

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