These are somewhat uncertain times for the UK. The process of leaving the EU is set to start across the next few months, there is a new cabinet in charge of the country and many changes are bound to begin coming into force due to both of these factors.
The current government and shadow cabinet are both suggesting fresh policies, to deal with a post-Brexit Britain and also improve the UK economy and life. As well as affecting individuals, all these potential government policies could have a big impact on small business owners if and when they are implemented.
Upcoming Autumn Statement
This will be the first autumn statement from the new Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond, which is set to be delivered on 23rd November. It is expected that Hammond will announce a big boost to the manufacturing industry as part of the statement.
It comes on the back of pressure from manufacturers, which claim they contribute around £190 billion a year to the UK’s economy. After Brexit the UK manufacturing sector believes it will be more important than ever to the economy, so a proposed boost should be good for existing and potential business owners in the industry.
Minimum wage has already experienced an increase across the country, yet there are plans to improve it to a rounded £10 an hour by 2020 by both the Conservative and Labour parties. Clearly this will be great news for workers and the economy, tackling inflation and rising living costs.
However, it will also have a profound effect on small business owners. They will need to plan ahead to be able to afford the drastically increased minimum wage for employees. For companies that run on a tight profit margin, or potential business owners looking to finance their new start-up, they may need to seek out additional help, such as by using manufacturing invoice finance.
National Investment Bank
The Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell has laid out his plans for rebuilding British industry after Brexit. While it looks like it will be at least another three or more years until the next general election, so Labour won’t be able to implement any policies until then at the earliest, they could still come into play in the future or be adopted by the current government.
His plan aims to borrow £100 billion to be put in a national investment bank at the heart of the UK’s economic renewal plan. The funds would be used to build infrastructure and support an entrepreneurial state, which suggests good things for potential business owners.
When the UK actually leaves the EU it will no longer have to adhere by many of its laws, including those that cover business and trade. The government will undoubtedly have to make some policy changes to accommodate leaving the EU and creating fresh trade agreements with other countries.
At the moment it is hard to predict whether these will be good or bad news for small business owners, as other changes in the economy by then could lead to different outcomes. Whatever happens, small businesses will need to be financially and strategically prepared for changes in government policies affecting business.
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