By Claire West

The Prime Minister David Cameron today (November 23rd) praised the courage of the UK’s 1.4m freelance workers and said they made a massive contribution to the nation’s economy.

The Prime Minister was speaking on National Freelancers Day, a day set aside to celebrate the growing number of people choosing this lifestyle choice.

In his letter to PCG, the voice of freelancing, the Prime Minister says: “I can’t tell you how much admiration I have for people who leave the comfort of a regular wage to strike out on their own. It takes a lot of courage —and without that courage this country would be a much poorer place.

He went on saying: “The 1.4million freelancers in our country make a massive contribution to our economy. More and more people are choosing freelancing, recognising that it strikes the right balance between work and life in the 21st century, and as we go for economic growth this Government is getting right behind them.”

The message of support comes in a week when a specially commissioned survey by PCG and carried out by ComRes showed that a resounding majority of businesses gave a vote of support to freelancers. It reveals 60% of business leaders confess that it would be difficult for their business to operate without freelancers and 55% of business leaders said freelancers were essential to growing the UK economy.

The flexibility of the freelance community was underlined with 64% of businesses approached saying the concept of a traditional ‘9 to 5 day’ was old hat and didn’t apply to those who worked for them. Despite economic doubts 73% of businesses envisage opportunities for freelancers within their organisations to increase or at least stay the same in the next 12 months.

The poll also highlights that nearly three-quarters (73%) of the 1,624 polled had actively chosen to become freelancers as a long-term career option.

John Brazier, Managing Director of PCG said: “What an inspiring endorsement from the Prime Minister. He has underlined the importance of this sector. Freelancers bring talent, skills and flexibility to the market place. The results of our poll confirm that more and more people see freelancing as a conscious career choice and it is encouraging to see in the poll that their worth, skill and flexibility is appreciated and seen as a necessity by businesses throughout the UK.”