The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) has published a comprehensive 'small business plan', outlining a host of reforms to help 'unlock the potential of Europe's small businesses'. It is urging the government to follow suit and produce its own plan.
In its plan, the FSB puts forward recommendations for enhancing productivity, boosting growth through trade, increasing digital security and promoting diversity across Europe.
Key measures include: revising the EU's Public Procurement Directive to prohibit persistent late payers from future public procurement contracts; making sure that trade agreements contain a comprehensive small business chapter; and ensuring skills initiatives and policies are 'more inclusive' of smaller businesses and sole traders.
The FSB also recommends improving law enforcement's response to cybercrime through the effective co-ordination of cyber security and crime agencies; and developing an EU-level framework to 'grow and support' women's enterprise.
Commenting on the plan, Mike Cherry, National Chairman of the FSB, said: 'Europe's 23.8 million vibrant small firms are the heartbeat of their respective economies, and it is right that policymakers in Brussels do everything they can to help these entrepreneurs grow and flourish.
'This is just as true for UK small businesses as it is for any other small business on the continent, as despite ongoing uncertainty about our future relationship with the EU, decisions made in Brussels will continue to impact the everyday lives of small business owners here in the UK.'