Access to credit is the life blood of many small businesses. Without it they struggle to operate and compete. Yet the UK banking sector is orientated to global markets rather than local investment and economic development and, in recent years, we’ve seen a stagnation of lending to small business and a loss of connection between lenders and communities.
Rather than attempting to attract national or international capital, community wealth building seeks to increase flows of investment within local economies, by harnessing the wealth that exists locally. Measures that channel investment to local communities while still delivering a steady financial return for investors include:
Encouraging local authority pension funds to redirect investment to local schemes;
Supporting mutually owned banks;
Challenging regional banks to enable local economic development.