Small businesses feel abandoned by politics

Almost four in ten small business owners (39%) believe that none of the political parties are concerned about small business issues. And in a blow to Labour's hopes of a fourth term, just 6% of SMEs agree that the current Government is doing enough to help small businesses recover from the recession - a resounding 75% say that it isn'.

Of the main political parties, the Conservatives so far seem to get the SME vote. Over a quarter of small business owners (28%) say that the party best represents and supports the interests of Britain's small businesses. This compares with Labour (7%) and the Liberal Democrat party (1%).

Business owners may have been won over by the Conservative promise to abandon the planned National Insurance tax rise, which the Tories say will save employers £150 a year for each employee. However, the SME vote isn't in the bag for Cameron yet as a quarter of small business owners (25%) are still undecided as to which party represents their interests best.

The message about change does seem to resonate with small businesses though. Almost two in ten SMEs (18%) say that a change of government is key to Britain enjoying a full and speedy economic recovery. However, three in ten (30%) say that cutting all laws, regulation, taxes and red tape that make British businesses less competitive is key - something that any new Government could do well to note.

Jake Ridge, small business expert at, said: "Small businesses are vital to the wealth and wellbeing of the nation. They are the backbone of Britain, accounting for over half of all private sector employment and private sector turnover. For this alone they deserve to be heard, which is why it's so worrying that so few believe the main political parties have small business interests at heart.

"SMEs have been at the brunt of the recession and are now battling their way to recovery. 44% think it will take more than a year for their business to recover from the recession, while 62% are concerned that the economy faces a double dip recovery. To get this far, 58% have had to cut costs and 47% have experienced cashflow concerns - any support the SME sector can now get from policymakers to help ease their concerns and get them back on their feet will be welcome.”