Opinion – 8 must-read economics stories of the week – Agenda – The World Economic Forum

According to the WEF, the UK’s ‘high-growth small businesses’ are world news this week. WEF provides a curated list of some of this week’s most interesting stories on economic growth and social inclusion.

Source: 8 must-read economics stories of the week – Agenda – The World Economic Forum

Personally, I think that the UK’s small businesses could do with some serious help from Chancellor, George Osborne and his government colleagues.

Dr Alf’s Seven Point Plan

  1. The UK’s big-businesses have powerful industry lobbies and can employ tax experts to reduce their tax bills. Small businesses often don’t get the tax breaks  – So there’s an urgent need to level the playing fields. For example, I would like to see small businesses get triple tax credits for investment in research and development. Also small businesses should get triple tax credits for professional development (there’s room for a whole new industry here).

2. The UK’s banking system favors those who work in big banks and their chums in big-business. Since 2008, small businesses have often struggled with mainstream finance from banks. More government guarantees are required to help ratchet up small business finance.

3. Local authorities should be encouraged to give small businesses, a three-year holiday from local taxation. This can be recouped from big-businesses operating in the local authority area, including shops.

Remember small business are better than big businesses for creating new jobs. Graduates are tired of stacking super-market shelves!

4. All UK public services in both central and local should give priority to small businesses.

5. The Brexit  debate must major on cutting red-tape and bureaucracy for small businesses.

6. The media should be given incentives for sponsoring public appetite for small businesses. We need more people like Lord Sugar to step forward.

7. Finally, central and local government departments should get special fiscal incentives to replace big consulting firms with independent executives and consultants. This would create more competition, increase public value-for-money, enhance small business development and possibly create a new export opportunity. I know that my good friend John Gelmini has leveraged his UK public sector experience and is looking to major export opportunities.

These are a just strawman proposals. My personal brainstorm.

Why don’t you brainstorm this with your friends? Then tell George Osborne. Here’s his Twitter handle @George_Osborne

Please feel free to chip in with your own ideas below. If we get a bit of debate, perhaps we’ll share it with George!

Erdoğan says Turkey may hit US-backed PYD to block advance – MIDEAST – Hurriyet Daily News

English: Vectorised image of Recep Tayyip Erdoğan

English: Vectorised image of Recep Tayyip Erdoğan (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Turkey‘s leading paper, Hurriyet,  cites President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan declaring that Turkey will “do what is necessary” to prevent U.S.-allied Syrian Kurdish militants from declaring autonomy in the town of Tel Abyad near the Turkish border, including conducting further military operations.

Source: Erdoğan says Turkey may hit US-backed PYD to block advance – MIDEAST

Turkey is an important member of NATO with the largest army, yet now Turkey could see herself on collision course with US policy. I’m struggling to follow who’s supporting whom. But I believe that Turkey is allied with Saudi Arabia in wanting President Asssad removed. Meanwhile, Russia and Iran are giving Assad support and helping challenge ISIS. The Western solution seems to be to break Syria into three self-governing parts including a Kurdish region – Turkey will oppose greater Kurdish autonomy.

Since President Putin has intervened in Syria and caught President Obama on the back foot, US policy has been changing at a knee-jerk speed. Even a NYT editorial has questioned the legality of a US escalation and the clarity of the endgame.

America needs a strong leader right now and I worry what Obama will do next.