‘The Government’s guarantee for bank lending to small and medium sized businesses should enable businesses to survive the downturn,’ said Sue Robinson, director of the RMIF.
However, she added, ‘more must be done to revive consumer confidence.’
The RMIF, representing 8000 retail car dealers, said the moves to guarantee lending and equity capital with underwriting worth £21 billion was positive.
But, says Robinson, consumer confidence must be revived at the same time. ‘Consumers want assurance from the Government that jobs are secure, that disposable income will not decline further, that general economic conditions will start to improve, and that credit will become more generally available.
‘Once this happens, consumers will return to normal buying patterns, and it is this that will secure the future for business in the long term.’
The RMIF says there are a number of further options the Government could take to help car dealers. These include:
• Abolition of the new rules on Vehicle Excise Duty refunds
• Higher and more realistic Business Rate Relief on empty premises
• Introduction of a Scrappage Scheme to stimulate new car sales
‘We are in regular contact with Government on these issues and more,’ said Robinson, ‘and will continue to advocate these measures.’