Statistics released today show that Wales is struggling regarding entrepreneurs setting up new businesses. The latest figures show Wales is below average for new business start-ups and above average for business closures.
Eluned Parrott AM, Welsh Liberal Democrat Shadow Economy Minister said:
"These are worrying figures for Wales and The Welsh Government. Whilst we've seen a tiny increase in the number of entrepreneurs setting up new businesses, we are behind the UK average. The Welsh Government have announced a review of funding for new businesses, which is welcome, but while I await the findings with interest, I am concerned that small businesses need assistance now.
"According to research by the Federation of Small Businesses, only 36% of small businesses in Wales have heard of Finance Wales and only 4% had secured funding from them. It is my view that Finance Wales needs to place greater emphasis on smaller, younger businesses. The average amount lent by Finance Wales is £83,000 with several firms borrowing over £1million. Clearly, they are missing the smallest businesses altogether.
"The Welsh Government need to offer high-quality help, both financial and non-financial to small young businesses, many of whom are key trades such as plumbers, mechanics and other local services. As well as loans to secure extra staff, materials or machinery, it is clear from these figures that firms need help in reviewing their activity and developing their future.
"I hope that the Welsh Government will look at these figures and take action so that any future figures show an improvement."