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Small Firms Association criticises coalition proposal to reverse minimum wage cut

The SFA is cautiously welcoming the programme for government which is its says is “good and bad for small firms”.
Mar 7th 2011, 1:57 PM 517 0

THE SMALL FIRMS Association (SFA) has criticised the coalition government’s proposal to reverse the cut in minimum wage imposed by the outgoing government.

The SFA said there were “good and bad issues” contained within the programme for government agreed by Fine Gael and Labour.

It said that the reversal of the minimum wage rate back to €8.65 after it was cut by €1 last December is “not in line with the current economic environment and the challenges which small firms are facing.”

But it welcomed some aspects of the document with Avine McNally, SFA Director, saying:

At last we have a commitment that a partial government backed loan guarantee scheme, will be introduced, this should assist those viable companies who currently are unable to access credit to survive, grow, retain jobs and create employment into the future.

On the proposal for a Strategic Investment Bank the organisation said the “devil will be in the detail”.

The SFA also criticised the programme’s lack of a commitment to reducing local authority rates and reduce employers’ PRSI but welcomed the review of commercial rents and bankruptcy legislation.

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It also said that Ireland needed a stronger performance from the entrepreneurial sector.

McNally called for a minister with responsibility for the small business agenda to be appointed to enforce a small and medium enterprises policy.

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Hugh O'Connell

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