max temp: 12°C

min temp: 6°C

ESTD 1874 Search

UK: Milliband pledge to small business

10:22 28 March 2014

Labour leader Ed Milliband

Labour leader Ed Milliband

Archant © 2011

Labour leader Ed Miliband is to make a fresh attempt to reach out to business with a promise to protect small firms from “unfair” treatment at the hands of the energy companies.


In a speech today to the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) in Manchester, he will say that a Labour government would reform the energy market to ensure small firms were given the same legal protections as householders.

These would include establishing a new energy regulator with powers to suppliers from rolling firms on to more expensive tariffs without their consent or hitting them with “crippling” back-bills for periods of longer than a year.

“It is unacceptable that companies like yours do not have even basic protections that are available to households under the law from unfair energy contracts,” he will say.

Labour would also give business organisations like the FSB new legal rights to take cases - such as late payment by firms or government departments - to court on behalf of their members.

It would also invite the FSB to join Which? and Citizens Advice in helping to set the agenda for the Competition and Markets Authority’s investigations to ensure markets were working properly in the interests of consumers and businesses.

“Since the turn of the century, the number of people working for themselves has increased by over one million,” he will say.

“Small businesses are now the bedrock of our economy.

“The Labour Party has always stood up for working people.

“If we are going to do that in the future, the party I lead will recognise that millions of working people are working for themselves.”


1 comment

  • It's a pity that the Labour party didn't recognise the importance of small businesses and the self employed - all of whom are working people - back in 1997 or so when they introduced that obnoxious piece of legislation otherwise known as IR35 ! If they and the Conservatives really cared they'd unpick it. Whilst such legislation exists it creates a very uneven playing field.

    Report this comment

    Adrian Day

    Friday, March 28, 2014

DFS is celebrating record results.

Sofa chain DFS Furniture has hailed a record set of results as Britain’s buoyant housing market and growing consumer confidence boosted sales.

The Bank of England Monetary Policy Committee is expected to keep interest rates at 0.5%.

The Bank of England is expected to keep interest rates on hold today amid mounting concern over a slowdown in the economy.

Owner and head chef of Sweet P's, Pierre Rollins.

Soul food restaurant Sweet P’s is due to reopen next week after a devastating kitchen fire six months ago.

The new board members at employee-owned social enterprise Leadiing Lives who were elected at its AGM.

More than 50 jobs have been saved in Suffolk and north-west Essex following the closure of care support charity Crossroads Care East Anglia.

The Great House in Lavenham has been awarded three rossetts from the AA. Left to right, Martine and Regis Crepy, Enrique Bilbault, Swann Auffray, David Castro, Guillavme Dericq.

An award-winning Suffolk restaurant has officially been recognised as one of the best in the country.

George Bradley of Suffolk Secrets.

The belated arrival of settled weather in mid-September has helped to deliver an “Indian Summer” boost for Suffolk Secrets, one of the county’s leading holiday lets businesses.

Some of SABMiller's beer brands.

Brewing giant Anheuser-Busch InBev today unveiled another improved offer for rival SAB Miller.

Tesco  has revealed a 70% plunge in half-year earnings for its UK and Ireland business.

Supermarket giant Tesco revealed a 70% fall in half year earnings for its UK and Ireland business despite seeing an improvement in under-pressure sales.

The Cask Report has highlighted the importance of real ale to the the pub trade.

Drinkers of real ale are a “lifeline” for Britain’s hard-pressed pubs sector, according to a new study.

A queue outside of a Greggs store.

Baker Greggs warned the new national living wage will put pressure on the group to raise the prices of its pasties and sausage rolls.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages