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MPs divided over how to help entrepreneurs

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The poll by YouGov for The Entrepreneurs Network think tank asked MPs how different policies would impact entrepreneurship in the UK. 

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Conservative MPs favour cutting taxes and business regulation while Labour’s parliamentarians want to boost spending on skills, grants and Government support services.

98 per cent of Tories said they wanted to cut regulation and 94 per cent want to lower personal tax. 93 per cent of Labour MPs said they wanted to increase skills spending.

The poll revealed the controversial nature of some proposed policies. While 91 per cent of Conservatives said they wanted the UK to be exempted from EU business rules, just 15 per cent of Labour MPs said the same. 75 per cent of Labour’s politicians said they wanted to boost spending on Government support services, versus just 40 per cent of Tories.

The poll also revealed a startling knowledge gap among MPs, many of whom are unaware of key Government policies to support entrepreneurs. 

66 per cent had never heard of the Angel CoFund, which invests alongside business angels to support SMEs, and half had not heard of Growth Accelerator, the mentoring and funding scheme for growing companies.

Philip Salter, director of The Entrepreneur’s Network, said:“It’s encouraging that MPs are increasingly vocal about supporting Britain’s entrepreneurs; however, the fact that they are unfamiliar with the policies already in place is worrying.”

“As things stand, MPs don’t appear adequately informed to vote on future policy changes impacting entrepreneurs. Also, MPs should be familiar with these schemes so that they are able to pass on details to the many entrepreneurs they meet in their constituencies.”

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