Havant MP Alan Mak talks about the contribution of small businesses
So I was delighted last week to help another community-minded business, Driving Miss Daisy based on Hayling Island.
The company provides a community companion and personal transport service, driving people to the shops, medical appointments and the like.
They were popular exhibitors at my first Older Persons’ Information Fair last month.
Driving Miss Daisy joins a long list of local small businesses that are the backbone of our economy and are responsible for nearly half the jobs created across the country.
I am proud the government has thrown its weight behind small businesses and has introduced a whole host of measures to make it easier for small businesses to set up and thrive.
A cut in corporation tax, help with business rates and support for apprenticeships, have all led to the creation of 760,000 more businesses since 2010.
Coming from a family of high street shop owners myself, I know first-hand the importance of these firms in building a thriving economy.
It is partly the reason why I launched the Havant Small Business Awards last year with The News, to recognise their vital work.
Another event that raises the profile of local firms is Small Business Saturday, taking place on the first Saturday in December.
I’m looking forward to meeting many business owners throughout the day as I did last year.
Last week in Westminster, I made the effort to be in parliament on a Friday, switching my usual constituency day to Thursday, to join a group of MPs backing a bill to help tackle homelessness during a crucial House of Commons vote.
Thankfully, homelessness is low across Havant, but we should not be complacent on a national level.
Nobody should be forced to sleep rough because they can’t get the help they need.
What started out as an effort by backbenchers like me has now secured government backing.
I’m launching my policy paper on the fourth industrial revolution in parliament on Monday, November 14 with business secretary Greg Clark.
It’s about how new technology is changing our economy and workplaces.
Any constituents wishing to attend please contact me.
My thanks go to Havant borough residents for their continuing support.