• Government must resource and follow through on plan. • The Entrepreneur must be central focus of any initiatives. • Local Enterprise Offices must be actively and positively promoted.
ISME, Thursday 9th October 2014.
ISME, the Irish Small and Medium Enterprises Association, has welcomed the Government’s National Policy Statement on Entrepreneurship launched today (9th October). The plan is aimed at improving and promoting the enterprise culture in Ireland, in an attempt to create an extra 93,000 jobs in start-up companies, over the next five years. The Association called on the Government to ensure that the plan received its full commitment and that entrepreneurship remained at the centre of the policy agenda.
Commenting, ISME CEO, Mark Fielding said, “While we welcome the Policy Statement and are fully supportive of increasing entrepreneurial activity and the status of the business person, we must also remind Government that without real changes to the tax system, their aspiration for 93,000 new jobs will not succeed. Jobs will be created when the environment is right, both in costs and incentive infrastructure”.
“The promotion and the services of the newly formed Local Enterprise Offices (LEO) must be improved. The initial reports from around the country is that the LEOs (now part of the County Council set-up) are being shoved into back offices and not getting the promotion and exposure required to ‘drive an entrepreneurial culture’.”
“ISME is pleased to see the plan includes education programmes to promote entrepreneurship as a career choice for young people. The Association has long been a proponent of entrepreneurial education from primary level, as it has been shown that even basic entrepreneurial education will encourage students, which can translate into real business ventures. Just as important, it will contribute to an attitudinal change towards entrepreneurship within Irish culture.”
“The key target to double the number of jobs from start-ups over the next five years is laudable but will require sustained effort from the Government and the delivery of an enterprise-focused budget next week from the Minister for Finance.”
“Minister Bruton is to be commended for including actual targets by which the plan can be managed and measured. 25% increases in actual start-ups, survival rate and up-scaling over five years can be achieved with increased back-up from state agencies. The main priority must always be to create a competitive business environment in which budding entrepreneurs can see potential for their business idea to succeed and grow,” concluded Fielding.