Live updates

Business boost to Birmingham with new Enterprise Zones

Three areas of Birmingham will receive part of a £100m investment to help fund infrastructure projects and boost local growth.

In total, 13 Enterprise Zones across Britain have been given the green light in a bid to attract business and create jobs.

The areas of Birmingham include:

  • Masshouse – city centre: This area is set to becomes a major city centre office employment space.
  • Argyle Works – Great Barr Street: The Greater Birmingham and Solihull local enterprise partnership is upgrading the city’s digital infrastructure, bringing ultra-fast broadband to the area.
  • Arena Central – Broad Street: Arena Central is a 9.2 acre regeneration site in the heart of Birmingham City Centre. The Enterprise Zone will fund a new pedestrian link between Broad Street and Holliday Street and help create ready development plots on Bridge Street and Broad Street.

Enterprise Zones have already created 3,000 new jobs across the country, attracted 126 businesses, generated 105,000 square metres of new commercial floorspace and secured almost £229 million of extra private sector investment.

Osborne: 'The UK economy is too focused on the South'

Chancellor George Osborne has today said that he's going to give businesses tax breaks to set up in the Midlands. He believes the UK economy is too focused on the south.

He was in Birmingham's Jewellery Quarter this morning, where he looked around the Assay office – the firm behind the hallmark on gold and silver.

Assay will be moving to a new site in an Enterprise Zone – an area of the city where firms will receive benefits.

Advertisement

Chancellor 'side-steps' questions over fuel duty

The Chancellor has side-stepped questions over scrapping a fuel duty increase in the budget.

On a visit to Birmingham he said petrol was already 10p cheaper now because of action the government has taken.

He was in Birmingham to launch an Enterprise Zones – areas around the country that support both new and expanding businesses by offering incentives.

The Chancellor said for too long the UK relied on London to generate growth in the country.

The government now wants to help regions grow, which is why it's giving tax breaks for firms to set up in cities like Birmingham.

Investment in the future of Nottingham Enterprise Zone announced

A major investment for the Nottingham Enterprise Zone has been announced and is expected to be around £25 million.

Boots Alliance, the beauty and pharmaceutical company today confirmed its investment into the project.

An Enterprise Zone is a Government initiative announced in the 2011 Budget and several have been declared throughout the UK.

An Enterprise Business Zone is an area that has cheaper business rates, superfast broadband and easier planning control.

It is hoped these areas will encourage business growth.

Enterprise zone in Northampton gets £7m boost

An enterprise zone in the East Midlands has been awarded £7m to boost economic activity and create jobs.

Northampton's Waterside Enterprise Zone will be given the cash by the South East Midlands Local Enterprise Partnership. The money comes from the Government's Growing Places Fund.

It has not yet been confirmed how the money will be spent but the Borough Council says it is likely to be invested in three key projects:

  • A £2m investment to improve traffic flow around St Peter’s Way roundabout and Northampton Station
  • Site investigation work to improve the condition of land on one of the key Enterprise Zone sites at Sixfields.
  • Negotiations will be held with landowners in areas of the Enterprise Zone that is not in public ownership with a view to creating sites ready for development

“This is a significant investment in the Enterprise Zone that will really kick start our plans. The funds will help us deliver a range of schemes that will push development forward and unlock the massive potential that the area has to bring jobs to Northampton.”

– Cllr David Mackintosh, Leader of Northampton Borough Council