HC Deb 19 July 1995 vol 263 cc1241-2W
Mr. David Shaw

To ask the Prime Minister if he will make a statement on the results of(a) his policies and (b) his Department in helping small businesses over the last 12 months as against the previous 12 months; and if he will publish the performance indicators by which his Department monitors those achievements and the statistical results of such monitoring. [34696]

The Prime Minister

The Government recognise the crucial role played by small firms in the UK economy and aim to help them by providing sound economic conditions—keeping inflation and interest rates low; reducing legislative, administrative and taxation burdens; and where appropriate provide direct assistance in the forms of specialist advice and support and easing access to finance.

The recently announced White Paper "Forging Ahead" outlines a programme of measures to assist the growth and competitiveness of the small firms sector.

Specific measures to assist small firms are the responsibility of my right hon. Friends, the President of the Board of Trade, the Secretary of State for Scotland and the Secretary of State for Wales. For details of specific programmes, I refer the hon. Member to their replies today.