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Volume 508: debated on Monday 22 March 2010

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills if he will set out, with statistical information as closely related to Chorley constituency as possible, the effect on that constituency of the policies of his Department and its predecessors since 1997. (314232)

Since 1997, the policies and actions of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (and its predecessors) have focused on building a competitive economy and on delivering prosperity and sustainable economic growth. The implementation of BIS policy in Chorley has been taken forward primarily by the North West Development Agency and the Government Office for the north-west, working in partnership with the local authority and other relevant bodies.

Caution must be exercised in seeking to attribute directly the effects of specific measures on local economic indicators. Nonetheless, examples of how BIS policies and actions have impacted on Chorley include:

Levels of skills have increased in the years for which data is available, between 2000 and 2008. Performance at level 2 has increased from 62.7 per cent. to 67.7 per cent., at level 3 from 41.6 per cent. to 48.3 per cent., and at level 4 from 22.3 per cent. to 27.3 per cent.1;

The stock of VAT registered businesses has increased from 2,880 businesses in 1997 to 3,365 businesses in 20072;

The proportion of business registrations (including VAT and PAYE) per 10,000 resident population aged 16 and above (National Indicator 171) has increased from 49.7 in 2002 to 59.5 in 20083; and

The percentage of small businesses showing growth in number of employees (National Indicator 172) has increased from 10.6 per cent. in 2003 to 14.5 per cent. in 20084.

1 Extracted from NOMIS “NVQ Qualifications time series for Chorley”.

2 Extracted from NOMIS, source: BERR—VAT registrations/deregistrations by industry.

3 Data produced by BIS and available on the BIS website:

4 As above.