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Enterprise Zones

Volume 76: debated on Wednesday 3 April 1985

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asked the Secretary of State for the Environment (1) what is the total average of Government direct and indirect expenditure per annum on enterprise zones; how many new firms now operate in such zones; and how many jobs have so far been created;(2) by what percentage, in real terms, rate revenues from enterprise zones have risen since 1980;(3) by what percentage, in real terms, rate revenues have risen annually since 1980 in areas

(a) inside and (b) outside enterprise zones.

The only enterprise zone measure for which the expenditure borne by central Government can be stated precisely is the exemption from rates. The cost of this (at outturn prices) has been:

  • 1981–82 £3,508,770 (seven zones).
  • 1982–83 £8,069,839 (eight zones).
  • 1983–84 £10,377,343 (seventeen zones).
  • 1984–85 £5,837,863 (advance payments as at July 1984) (seventeen zones).
  • Final figures for 1984–85 are not yet available.
The consultants who monitored progress in the first 11 zones reported that on the basis of surveys carried out between the date of designation of the zones and 31 May 1983 some 8,065 jobs had been created in the zones. In addition, they estimated that a further 2,885 jobs had been created in the period 31 May to 31 December 1983. During the whole period they reported that 1,024 firms had moved into the enterprise zones; 60 per cent. of the firms that moved in before 31 May 1983 were new ones.The numbers of firms and jobs in all 17 English zones are being gathered but are not presently available.The cost of rates revenue foregone from the first eight English enterprise zones has risen at the following rate:

Percentage over previous year (at constant prices)
For the same years, revenues from non-domestic rates increased by 6·8 per cent. and 2·4 per cent. in real terms respectively in all England.No comparable figures can yet be produced for the 17 English zones now in existence. Nor is information available about the increase in general tax revenue in the enterprise zones.