Skye businessman Marc Smith feels he and others like him are being “penalised” by Chancellor Philip Hammond’s decision to increase national insurance contributions (NIC) for self-employed workers.
Mr Smith has run his home-based animation company, The Cuillin Collective, from the scattered hamlet of Elgol, on the island’s south coast for six years, after moving from Edinburgh.
He believes the hike in NIC may cause others to reconsider ambitions to follow in his footsteps to work for themselves.
“It’s a frustrating move,” he said yesterday.
“I think its another thing to hold you back from becoming self-employed. People thinking about starting their own business might think twice now.
“In areas like this and many other parts of the Highlands and Islands there are not many commercial jobs available for people.
“I think people will still see the benefit of starting their own business, but it might take them longer to make the decision to do it now.”
He added that there were implications for people already working on a self-employed basis.
“One per cent is a lot of money,” he continued.
“It’s money that could go towards bringing people on board to work with you or buying new equipment. Those are things you would want to be doing anyway.
“We are being penalised. It’s not a problem for us because we can afford it. But why should we have to afford it? They are taking money off us to pay for things we don’t necessarily want.”