Especially in difficult times (and current times certainly count as ‘difficult’ for most businesses), business asks for help from government.
Yet in the good times (and they will come again), they want government to stop ‘interfering’.
They can’t expect to have it whichever way they like.
The role of government in improving productivity is simple. They should establish a supportive infrastructure – microeconomic climate, policy framework ,technology infrastructure, physical infrastructure (airports, ports ,roads and so on). They should set overall direction – directing how productivity and economic success should shape social and environmental objectives.
They should then get out of the way and allow business to build on the supportive infrastructure, building successful trade and making their contribution to societal well-being by providing employment and paying ‘fair’ taxes.
Government is not there to apply sticking plasters or medicine. Businesses have to address their own issues, solve their own problems and develop their own productivity. Otherwise, governments provide aid and support – normally at great expense – and load the economy with too many rules, regulations – and taxes.
Government should let businesses grow into ‘big boys’ or ‘big girls’ who can look after themselves. Tools are available. Advice too. Buts free handouts should not be necessary. Unfortunately, in hard times, some businesses will ‘go to the wall’ but those that are left will be leaner, tougher and more productive.