The GPI industrial policy programme for 2011/2012 is focused on finding ways to address key restraints to growth faced by industry in the UK. The aim is to be able to make constructive and well researched recommendations on measures that will aid UK economic recovery. Although, not traditionally regarded as an industry sector, small and medium sized companies (SMEs) play a key role in the economy, and could potentially play a key role in economic recovery. One important barrier to this happening is the difficulty many SMEs face in obtaining financial support. To help understand this problem, GPI has undertaken a short study outlining the significance of the sector, some of the approaches to the provision of finance and their shortcomings, and has identified a number of measures that could lead to improvements. This study is based upon desk research and refers to published research carried out in the UK and elsewhere. As a next step, this report will be discussed with industry representatives with a view to validating the measures proposed.