01 May 2012

SNP MSP for Glasgow Shettleston, John Mason, has welcomed news that small businesses across Scotland, including the East End, have benefitted from over £400m of rates relief since the SNP launched its flagship Small Business Bonus Scheme, new figures show.

The figures, recently revealed in a Parliamentary Answer, also show that 2011/12 was a record-breaking year for the small business bonus scheme, with local authorities across Scotland benefitting from over £130m in rates relief.

John Mason, SNP MSP for the East End and Deputy Convener of the Scottish Parliament’s Finance Committee, said the new figures – which outline an increase in the SBBS awards in local authorities across Scotland – are testament to the huge importance that the SNP Government has placed on helping small businesses during tough economic times.

Commenting, John Mason MSP said:

“These figures show how much of a difference the SNP Government has made to over 80,000 small businesses across Scotland in difficult financial times.

“As well as visiting local schools, I also visit local businesses and it’s clear from speaking to small businesses how fragile an environment they operate in. A Federation of Small Business survey from 2009 – conducted during the teeth of the recession – suggested that the SBBS was helping one in eight recipients stay solvent. That is very significant.

“Just recently we have seen that the UK has technically re-entered recession – although we don’t know yet whether this is the case in Scotland, there is no doubt that we still must do all we can to support local economies across Scotland.

“That’s why I’m delighted that SNP Councils have pledged to work with the Scottish Government to protect the Small Business Bonus for the lifetime of this Parliament.”