Figures from the Industry and Parliament Trust (IPT) show that 14 per cent of MPs have 15 years or more experience in business or financial management, up from just seven per cent in 2008. Furthermore, the trend has extended to Parliamentary candidates too, with 37 per cent offering extensive business CVs – more candidates currently work in the private sector than any other.
According to the IPT, the prospective parliamentarians have even more of this experience than existing MPs do.
But despite the improvement fewer than half of the candidates surveyed by research agency ComRes could demonstrate business and financial management experience. Just 31 per cent cited business as a political interest while only 21 per cent mentioned the economy.
"We should not underestimate the importance of the year ahead," said the Forum of Private Business’ chief executive, Phil Orford. "Even when the economy technically comes out of recession many small businesses will be in greater need of funding in order to keep up with demand.
"That is not in place at the moment and it will be incumbent on all parliamentarians – new and old – to work to create an enterprise environment that supports business growth rather than hindering it.
“It appears that, disillusioned with existing enterprise policies, more entrepreneurs are proactively seeking to get involved by putting themselves forward for election."
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