MPs unfamiliar with small business policies

‘Research by the Entrepreneurs Network and Bircham Dyson Bell shows that half of MPs are unaware of the policies that have been introduced to help boost small business growth.

Of the 100 politicians surveyed, 55% had never heard of Catapult Centres, the organisations set up by Innovate UK, the Government’s innovation arm, to promote R&D; while 48% had never heard of Innovate UK itself. Some 58% admitted they had not heard of the Angel CoFund, the Government’s £100m seed investment arm, while 53% were unaware of the 2013 Patent Box legislation, which helps entrepreneurs profit from their intellectual property. The Business Growth Service was slightly better known – just 38% of MPs had never heard of it.

Meanwhile, the majority of Conservative MPs polled (86%) were in favour of lowering personal taxation and business taxation but 56% either hadn’t heard of SEIS, which offers investors tax relief on 50% of their investments up to £100,000, or didn’t know enough about it to decide whether it was effective. Labour MPs were similarly caught out by the poll: 63% were in favour of spending more on Government grants and loans, and 61% wanted more Government support services. However, 61% had never heard of Innovate UK, which supports entrepreneurs by running competitions worth up to £536m in Government funding, or didn’t know enough about the scheme to decide if it was effective.

Source: The Daily Telegraph

It’s rare that we feel sorry for MPs but for once the expense-scandal-laden members have our sympathy. Put an MP on the spot and they’re supposed to know everything from small business policies to the intricacies of funding the NHS, from defence contracts to our foreign policy in some far flung country that a ridiculously high percentage of Brits have never even heard of. As long as the Government are supporting small businesses and promoting entrepreneurship then does it really matter if not all MPs are experts on all these areas?

Fortunately for the 53 MPs who are unaware of the patent box legislation and the 56% who have never heard of SEIS, we have. So get in touch to find out more. Now, where did I put my expense claim form…?



Sam Inkersole

In 2022, Sam won the Taxation’s Rising Star award at the Taxation Awards in and was named in the Accountancy Age 35 Under 35.

Jon Wedge

While Jon’s client work focuses on the financial services sector, he also oversees the firm’s assurance service, as well as supporting the trainees following in his footsteps.


Elana joined us in 2017 as an ACA trainee, after graduating from Durham University where she had studied languages. She is now a manager in our assurance team.


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