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SFA Calls For 'Level Playing Field' For SMEs In Budget

The Small Firms Association (SFA) has published its pre-Budget submission, in which it calls for more support for small businesses, and a platform that "puts the self-employed risk-takers back on a level playing-field with PAYE workers and rewards work.”

Commenting on the submission, SFA Chairman, AJ Noonan said, “Access to funding for small business continues to be difficult and a 30% equity investment is now demanded by the banks before they grant approvals for small business loans.

"The State has a key role to play in enabling entrepreneurs to meet that equity investment threshold, through enhancing the current Employment and Investment Incentive Scheme (EIIS), which is completely under-utilised due to lack of awareness and over complexity.  This Scheme allows people who invest in small businesses a tax right-off.”

The SFA believes that the government should reduce the lower rate of Employer PRSI from 8.5% to 4.25%, which it said is stifling job creation.

"There must be no additional stealth taxes introduced on labour. Social welfare traps must also be removed once and for all”, Noonan added.

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