The Small Firms Association (SFA) held its annual conference this week, with its chairman issuing a call for the new Government to address a number of issues affecting small businesses in Ireland.
According to a report in The Sunday Business Post, AJ Noonan will recommend a pro-business tax policy that would involve a fresh capital gains tax regime more beneficial to existing business, as well share option schemes to help firms attract and retain talent.
The SFA points to the cost of finance and the current infrastructure deficit as major problems facing its members.
SFA Launches “Vision for Small Business in Ireland”
A new report from the SFA sets out a medium-term plan to stimulate growth, noting that small companies make up 98% of all Irish business and employs half of the private sector workforce.
According to Noonan:
“Small business often does not get the recognition it deserves because its contribution is based on thousands of smaller investments and jobs created every year rather than once-off ‘big bangs’.
“Much of government policy is based on backing winners and attracting foreign multi-nationals, rather than creating an environment for more and more indigenous businesses to establish, create jobs, survive and succeed”.
Earlier this month, the SFA outlined its eight key priorities for the new administration, including an end to “tax discrimination against the self-employed and entrepreneurs” and finding a solution to the rising cost of doing business.
The organisation was also hoping for the reintroduction of a dedicated Minister for Small Business, which did not come to pass. Pat Breen of Fine Gael is the new Minister of State for Employment and Small Business.