|John Perry TD|
The first meeting of the Small Business Advisory Group designed to act as a conduit between the Government and small business got underway this morning.
The Taoiseach Enda Kenny attended the meeting, which is chaired by the Minister For Small Business, John Perry.
The Minister for Small Business, John Perry said that "it is vitally important that as a Government we communicate what we are doing and that we hear close hand what issues need to be addressed more urgently and what measures can be considered to further support small business."
Minister Perry said that the Small Business Advisory Group would be working against the backdrop of the most difficult challenge ever confronted by this State in relation to the position of the public finances. "Any initiatives developed must have regard to what is deliverable in this context."
The broad terms of reference for the Small Business Advisory Group are to facilitate structured and regular dialogue between the Minister for Small Business and representatives of the small business sector on issues of concern to that sector on how to promote the economic development and job potential of the sector having regard to the current restraints imposed on the national finances and to recommend action points and follow up.
The Group is not being required to issue any report.
The Director of the Small Firms Association, Patricia Callan, welcomed today's launch of the Small Business Advisory Group.
|Group will advise SMEs|
"Through the establishment of the Group, the Government have recognised the critical role that small firms play in the Irish economy and this forum will focus on the key concerns for small firms and ensure that the correct environment is created that will support them," Callan said.
While recognising the financial constraints that the Government is operating under, Callan said it was essential that they continued to focus on where there will be a direct return on investment and that is through supporting small businesses in retaining jobs.
"We need to ensure that the competitive environment is urgently created to allow small Irish firms compete, through tackling Government controlled costs such as electricity and other energy costs, local authority charges, regulatory burden and waste/water charges."