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Campaign group aims to improve business lending

Date Added: 05/06/2013  

A campaign group has been launched in the north-west of England in a bid to improve the state of business lending.

Recent data revealed by the Bank of England showed lending to companies is still falling despite the efforts of the government, which teamed up with the Bank last year to set up the Funding for Lending Scheme.

The Lancashire Business Finance Commission (LBFC), under the auspices of the North and Western Lancashire Chamber of Commerce (NWLCC), is now aiming to make it clear to the banks, financial institutions and politicians the effect of slow business lending in the UK.

Norman Tenray managing director of Obas UK and vice-president of the NWLCC told the Lancashire Evening Post that any rise in business lending has been confined to the biggest companies in recent months, meaning small to medium-sized enterprises are missing out.

The chairman of the group said: "Our figures, born from a recent finance survey, highlight the need for more support for young and fast growing companies who aren’t getting access to the finance they need to expand and drive growth. Indeed, our latest economic survey shows that business confidence is up and exports are strong. The signs of growing business confidence must not be choked off by credit constraints."

He added that the LBFC is aiming to work with the NWLCC to bring about a constructive dialogue between policymakers and the business community and improve the state of business lending in the UK.

Commenting on the latest fall in business lending in the UK, director for competitive markets at the Confederation of British Industry Matthew Fell stated that the Funding for Lending Scheme has succeeded in its aim of reducing the cost of finance for businesses and households, even though he accepted that lending figures overall have been a disappointment.

He explained that some of the factors holding back the flow of credit to small firms in need of finance include a lack of confidence amongst businesses and deleveraging by banks.

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Posted by Michael Beam

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