Authorities optimistic on small enterprise Brexit transition voucher

Cabinet Minister Michael Gove spoke to 250 company bosses on Tuesday

Michael Gove has responded positively to the concept of a Brexit transition voucher to help small businesses survive Brexit.

The Cabinet Office Minister in charge of preparing for Brexit said the concept of a Brexit transitional voucher for small businesses that need to buy new equipment or pay for services is being examined and will require “intensive discussions”.

The small business association that asked Mr Gove about a Brexit transition voucher has long supported such a program. Last month, FSB Chairman Mike Cherry described transition vouchers as “a sensible way forward” – fixed amounts that could be spent on expertise, technology and training.

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Last month, FSB national chairman Mike Cherry said, “Given that small businesses have been unabated by coronavirus-related disruptions in the past six months, the government needs significant financial assistance to prepare for the transition to help.”

The Cabinet Office Minister spoke to 250 business executives and business groups during a conference call yesterday.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson was also on the scene, reportedly making positive noises about helping small businesses.

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The Brexit Transitional Voucher discussion was a ray of sunshine in an otherwise dire appeal that business leaders took to be a box for the government to say it had spoken to business about a possible no-deal Brexit.

At one point, the source described the call to the Telegraph as “anodyne” and another said it was “shocking, embarrassing and not constructive” amid growing fears that the government will try to attribute any disruption to trade to the companies’ failure to respond prepare.

Afterwards, one of those who spoke on the phone told the Times that Mr. Johnson had been “superficial” and another said that Mr. Johnson’s comments were nothing more than “bluff and bluster” and that he had shown no evidence of it got that he had overlooked the detail of the necessary changes.

Mr Johnson spoke for 10 minutes before departing in what one attendee described as “disrespectful” and expressing his lack of interest in the business.

further reading

Preparing for Brexit – 6 steps you need to take to prepare

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