Budget - small Cambs firms feel snubbed by Osborne

SMALL companies in Cambridgeshire were less than impressed by Chancellor George Osborne’s Budget last week.

John Bridge, chief executive of Cambridgeshire Chambers of Commerce, said: “There has never been a more important moment for the government to focus on the long-term, sustainable growth of British business.

“The commitment to reducing corporation tax will be warmly received by some businesses. However, many small and medium sized companies will not benefit, and feel the Chancellor did not do enough in his Budget to support confidence and growth.

“Companies will be hit with a 5.6 per cent rise in business rates from April, lower allowances for new plant and machinery investment, no further incentive to create employment, particularly for young people and fuel duty increases in August.

“While welcoming the one per cent cut in Corporation Tax and reduced borrowing costs for some businesses, the problems companies have, particularly when it comes to accessing finance, will remain a real barrier to growth.

“Businesses need to see radical and meaningful delivery of the promises of reforming infrastructure, planning and employment law to provide some reassurances. It is pleasing to see the Chancellor did reiterate promises to carry out the reforms, along the overhaul of transport and broadband networks plus helping firms enter new overseas markets.

“I sincerely hope that the Chancellor’s actions speak louder than words over the coming weeks to show the Government’s real commitment to business growth.”

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But Huntingdon MP and Justice Minister Jonathan Djanogly said the proposed new measures rewarded work, adding that the Budget “unashamedly backs business and puts us on the side of those who aspire to do better for themselves and their families”.