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Give small buinesses a chance

14 April 2004

Democratic Unionist Party European election candidate, Jim Allister QC, has pledged himself to defending the interest of Northern Ireland’s small businesses if elected to the European Parliament.


Jim Allister said, “Small business is the backbone of Northern Ireland’s economy.  Yet, it above all, because of its limited resources, feels the burden of Brussels bureaucracy. The cost of complying with needless EU inspired form-filling for a small business, in terms of manpower and time, is immense. This culture of bureaucracy is suppressing innovative talent and oppressing initiative. Less not more regulation is required.


Before rushing into endless regulations the EU needs to ‘business proof’ its proposals. The EU’s present consultation process is geared to big business and the trade unions.  It ignores the vital sector of small to medium sized business, which is often hit hardest by EU inspired social and employment legislation. At the same time European public sector contracts are tilted by their tendering and procurement system in favour of big business.  Small to medium businesses are not getting their fair share of contracts with a cumulative value of £1000 billion.


The on-going efforts by the Commission and European Parliament to end the UK’s opt out on the prohibition on workers being employed for more than 48 hours per week must, in the interests of small business and the freedom of choice of the individual, be resisted.


In defending the interests of small business in the European Parliament I will be defending something which goes to the very core of economic success in Northern Ireland.”

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