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Departments: Standards

Volume 465: debated on Thursday 25 October 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform how many of his Department's public service agreement targets (a) take and (b) do not take account of rural proofing. (159633)

BERR will lead on three public service agreements (PSAs) in the period covered by the recent comprehensive spending review, i.e. 2008-11:

PSA 1: Raise the productivity of the UK economy;

PSA 6: Deliver the conditions for business success in the UK;

PSA 7: Improve the economic performance of all English regions and reduce the gap in economic growth rates between regions.

PSA 1 and PSA 6 target change in the whole economy and the underlying policies apply to businesses across the board, whether rural or urban.

PSA 7 on regional economic performance aims to ensure that the Government’s policies nationally, regionally and locally are aligned to maximise the potential for sustainable economic growth. Recognising that there may be trade-offs between policies to lift growth at different spatial scales, the delivery plan commits the Government to carry out further analysis to examine the trade-offs and, in particular, minimise the risk to increasing disparities between peripheral rural areas and other parts of a region.