Startups have become an important contributor to the UK’s economy in recent years, and have seen significant backing from the public and private sector alike. The Government’s Startup Loans scheme has provided over 20,000 businesses with over £100 million in capital, and large entities such as John Lewis – and even the Mayor of London – are supporting incubators and accelerators designed to help entrepreneurs get off the ground.

Perhaps the most visible subset of the wider startup community is technology startups, especially the cluster than has driven the regeneration of London’s Shoreditch area. The Old Street roundabout has become such a hub of entrepreneurial activity that Google and Facebook have moved in. Now, with the General Election just nine months away The Coalition for a Digital Economy (Coadec), a trade group representing these technology firms, has published The Startup Manifesto.

The Manifesto details ways in which the UK Government can foster further growth amongst technology startups, and turn the UK into “a world leader on digital innovation”. Coadec lays out 24 points which they believe will kindle increased technology entrepreneurship in the UK:

Improve access to finance

1.     Commit to keeping SEIS and EIS tax reliefs for the next Parliament

2.     Bring back tax reliefs for Corporate Venture Capital

3.     Remove the cap on Entrepreneurs’ Relief and lower the equity threshold

Improve access to talent

4.     Restore post-study work visas for STEM graduates

5.     Make it easier for startups to hire from overseas

6.     Reform the Graduate Entrepreneur Visa

7.     Open up the Entrepreneur Visa to those with funding from angel investors and crowdfunding platforms

8.     Review and streamline visa processes with the support of the Government Digital Service

9.     Invest to help teachers deliver the new computing curriculum

10. Create incentives for individuals and startups to help train teachers and students

11. Promote free tools including Moocs, Codecademy, and third sector initiatives like code clubs

Build world class digital infrastructure and increase supply of affordable office space

12. Continue to invest in superfast connectivity and raise the level of ambition for digital infrastructure

13. Review the planning system and property regulations to increase the supply of affordable office space for startups

Bring laws and regulations into the 21st Century

14. Make it government policy to support disruptive innovation and create an environment where people and businesses can adapt

15. Encourage permissionless innovation

16. Commit more resources to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO)

17. Create a framework for data protection that gives confidence to consumers and does not stifle innovation

18. Continue to support fintech innovation

19. Review regulations surrounding collaborative consumption and the ‘sharing economy’

Use digital government to unlock innovation

20. Make it easier for startups to sell to government

21. Commit to keep and expand the Government Digital Service

22. Create standards for secure online identity assurance

23. Accelerate progress towards ‘Government as a Platform’, including releasing APIs for government services

24. Go further on open data, including real-time performance dashboards for all government services

The Manifesto has been backed by some of the biggest names in the UK tech sector, including King (makers of mobile hit Candy Crush Saga), MOO and TransferWise. Executive Director of Coadec Guy Levin wrote in City AM:

“Technology is affecting all aspects of our lives, and the amazing thing is that this change is largely being driven by the little guy – startups that begin in a bedroom or garage are growing into giants that have an impact on all our lives. This stuff matters. That’s why we want all MPs to take a look at the manifesto and adopt its ideas.”

You can read the Startup Manifesto in full below.