CELEBRATING SMALL BUSINESS SATURDAY
Monday, 07 December 2015 12:52
Falkirk East MSP urges public to shop locally and support independent businesses at Christmas
On Small Business Saturday, the SNP reflected on a year of progress for Scotland’s small business community with the number of businesses at a record high. There are now more small businesses benefiting from reduced or removed rates and fewer empty shops on our high streets.
Latest figures show that the number of businesses in Scotland has gone up by over 90,000 since the SNP came to office and an increase of 26,090 in the last year alone. The number of businesses being supported through the Scottish Government’s Small Business Bonus Scheme has also risen this year to almost 100,000. This has contributed to the lowest retail vacancy rate for four years, as recently reported by the Scottish Retail Consortium.
Commenting, the MSP for Falkirk East, Angus MacDonald – pictured above and below visiting the Portonian Bakery and Café in Grangemouth on Saturday, which is run by the locally-based Finn family and sources all of its own produce from the area - said, "On Small Business Saturday we reflected on the contribution local retailers are making to Scotland’s economic recovery.
"Crucially, we should continue to show our appreciation for them by buying local."
Angus MacDonald MSP continued his statement by explaining, “There are now more businesses in Scotland than at any point since devolution and there has been an increase of over 90,000 since the SNP came to office.
"It’s no wonder there has been an increase with almost 100,000 small businesses now benefiting from reduced or removed business rates under the Small Business Bonus Scheme.
“This support is helping our high streets get back to business with the Scottish Retail Consortium reporting the lowest level of empty shops for four years. We recognise that there is much work to be done to rejuvenate our high streets – that’s why the Scottish Government has devolved business rates powers to local councils and is investing £1.7 million in a fund for town centre regeneration."
Mr. MacDonald then concluded, “Small Business Saturday marked the need for us to all do our bit by making purchases locally when going out to buy Christmas food, drink and presents.
"And only by practicing what we preach, can we ensure that independent businesses and our local economy and jobs are properly championed, supported and maintained.”