Prime Minister Theresa May is to hold a roundtable meeting of SMEs and trade associations today and tell them that they are “the backbone of our country”.

Mrs May will outline government plans to fully engage with small and medium sized companies to provide an economy that is more productive; highly skilled and open to new technologies and opportunities.d7csm1hnkgkh1ihllis8

Speaking ahead of the discussions, Mrs May said: “From dynamic start-ups to established family firms, our small and medium sized businesses are the backbone of our country. I want to build an economy that works for all, and that means working with, and listening to, smaller firms.

“The priorities I have set: a more productive, skilled workforce, an economy balanced across the UK and open to new opportunities, can only be achieved if we listen to these businesses.”

The Prime Minister said that SMEs will play a vital role in her future vision for the country where people from all backgrounds can prosper.

In a move that will likely be welcomed by many, the Prime Minister will be seeking the views of small businesses on the negotiations to exit the European Union and what the government can do to help them take advantage of the new opportunities presented by Brexit, in particular exporting.

Mrs May said: “I also want those firms, across all the sectors of our economy, to be able to take advantage of the opportunities presented by Brexit, such as exporting to new destinations. So I’ll be asking them for their views on we get our whole economy firing ahead of Brexit.”