Posted: Mon 30th Jul 2018
The number of times 'small business' was mentioned in the House of Commons dropped by half in 2017 compared to the previous year.
According to entrepreneur support network Enterprise Nation, 'small business' was mentioned 1,622 times in 2016 but only 825 times in the whole of 2017.
The ongoing trend in the last five years has also seen the number decline slightly over time, with 1,213 references in 2013, to 1,066 in 2014 and 955 in 2015.
The highest number of mentions in one day in those five years was on February 9 2016 in a debate on Sunday trading hours and the devastating impact of floods in the North West on businesses.
Emma Jones, founder of Enterprise Nation, said: "While counting the number of mentions in this way feels rather crude, it has in many respects confirmed what we knew - that the UK's small businesses have fallen off the Government's agenda.
"For a while now our members have told us they feel policy has shown little awareness of the risk/reward relationship and the hours of blood, sweat and tears small business founders put in to their enterprise, often ploughing their own money into a venture and keeping it afloat by doing a job.
"While the government claims to have the ear of business representative groups, this clearly isn't resulting in healthy or constructive Parliamentary debates. We have a job to do to get it back on the agenda."
The research looked at the number of references found in Hansard, the faithful transcript of Parliamentary debates, specifically made in the House of Commons over the last five years, from December to December in each instance. So far in 2018, small business has been mentioned 674 times with the biggest day to date on January 18.