Small Businesses - the backbone of the Scottish economy
With their very livelihood at stake, why should small business owners vote YES?
There doesn't appear to be have been much in the way of a scaremongering overload in this area that I have noticed, other than the potential difficulties/concerns facing small/medium sized businesses with regards the currency issue.
While there has not been a big media focus here, the Scottish Government has made its plans of how it will protect and encourage small and medium sized enterprises (SME). They have published this leaflet to explain their plans and the benefits.
Blair Jenkins (Chief Executive of Yes Scotland) has said :
"A Yes vote gives us the opportunity to give small and medium sized businesses the support and incentives they need to grow and develop which, in turn, leads to more jobs and increased productivity.
In an iScotland we will have the powers to tailor policy to match our own needs and priorities rather than being part of an economy that us focussed primarily on the City of London and the south-east of England.
Our SMEs have been key in driving growth, particularly across Scotland's key growth sectors of food and drink, financial services, life sciences, energy, creative industries and tourism.
With a broader range of powers we would be able to ensure this trend continues, and that is why we are keen to make sure that small businesses are as informed as possible on the opportunities available to them in an iScotland".
A couple of the powers that are being referred to above, are explained by Yes Scotland :
- A massive simplification of the tax system and the streamlining of competition and regulatory bodies; leading to major savings for taxpayers and a slashing of red tape for businesses. An example being power to lower the cost of employing new staff, with lower Employer National Insurance National rates for SMEs. And we can make different choices on corporate tax. .
- Powers over VAT will allow Scottish governments to deliver targeted breaks for key sectors, for example in the tourism and hospitality industries, boosting growth and generating a positive knock-on effect across the Scottish economy.
Others in the field of SMEs that have favoured independence, such as Jil Murphy, of Edinburgh-based marketing and branding company ThinRedLine Design, said:
"I reject the statement that small business owners need absolute certainty - everything evolves and changes and we adapt and take calculated risks.
It's how we differentiate ourselves and grow our individual business. With business start ups we've all learned to embrace change which by its very nature entails some uncertainty but it's a crucial element in the pursuit of business opportunity and progress.
It's common sense that it's people who live and work in Scotland who are responsible for making the decisions and how to run our own affairs, to shape our society as we choose and confront the challenges of our modern world." Michelle Thomson, director of Business Scotland (pro-indy business and economic policy network) said:
"Day in day out Business for Scotland is welcoming new members, business owners who see what an iScotland could mean for them.
Using the powers of devolution Scotland has the most competitive business environment in the UK thanks to a range of measures, like the small business bonus scheme, which means we are next only to London in terms of securing overseas investment and jobs, due to the fantastic efforts of Scottish Development International."
How is your SME business doing just now under Westminster? Are you concerned for the future of your business? Are your questions and/or concerns being answered, by both sides?