Today, on Twitter we’re seeing a campaign by the TUC for a minimum wage of £15. They do, however, qualify this by stating “by 2030”, but still, it’s obvious that the TUC are clueless about the plight of UK small businesses at this time. They’re not alone though, the Conservative Government, Labour’s Opposition Government and the Lib Dem’s have literally nothing to say on the subject of large scale failures in this sector. According to The Federation of Small Business, there are 5.5 million Small to Medium Enterprises (SME’s) in the UK, and this figure has dropped by 6.5% from the previous year. Now, that’s a lot of people employed by small businesses, but, there could be, literally, hundreds of thousands of people made redundant when (not if), these businesses go bust over the course of the coming Winter.
Small businesses do not have an energy price cap, and, energy companies have been very quick to pass any losses from their domestic consumers over to their business customers. Here’s a few examples from Tweets I saw yesterday… “We’ve gone from £50k-£144k. Super duper.” and… “Just been quoted £114k for mine up from £27k, we are a sports bar in the northeast and this is just totally unaffordable”. The prices for energy now being demanded from small businesses are simply unsustainable, yet, the energy companies now want £100 billion from the UK taxpayer to “freeze” the energy cap (Deficit Tariff Scheme), a move that does absolutely nothing for the small business sector. Literally, no one in power cares about this. The two candidates for Prime Minister haven’t even mentioned small businesses and this is after five weeks campaigning. To be honest, there’s very little that can be done now, as this matter should have been addressed at least six months ago. The candidates for PM are banging on about growth in the economy being the solution, but my question is this… “how do you grow an economy when energy is unaffordable to most business owners?”