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Small Businesses

Volume 35: debated on Monday 17 January 1983

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asked the Secretary of State for Industry whether any futher measures to help small businesses are being planned for 1983.

We are continuting to examine the need for new measures to help small businesses to supplement those already taken by this Government, which now number almost 100. I am looking at possible ways of improving the availability of advisory services for small businesmen. The small firms service is soon to open a new centre in Reading to meet demand in the South-East. I am also studying gaps in the supply of management education and of consultancy services including help with the application of information technology.In relation to the availability of finance, my review of the loan guarantee scheme will soon be completed and I shall then make a statement to the House. I also expect to announce shortly completion of arrangements for European loans under the new Community instrument for which the Government will provide the necessary exchange risk cover. I am considering a number of other measures and announcements will be made at the appropriate time.