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Business Support Agencies

Volume 570: debated on Thursday 14 March 1996

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asked Her Majesty's Government:What are the respective objectives and purposes of Training and Enterprise Councils, Business Links and Enterprise Agencies.

Training and Enterprise Councils (TECs) have a remit to develop strategies for training and enterprise which are key elements in the drive towards improving the competitiveness performance of businesses. The TEC role is, therefore, essentially long-term and strategic. It is about defining what needs to be done in each area to improve the effectiveness of training and enterprise support and doubt deploying the available funds effectively in order to reach agreed objectives.Business Links are partnerships of all the relevant local business support agencies. Their job is to improve the effectiveness of the delivery of business support services. In doing so, they will need to work within the overall strategy agreed between the TEC and the government office and within the constraints of the resources made available by the TEC and by other partners.Local Enterprise Agencies promote or encourage industrial and commercial activity or enterprise in locally defined areas of the UK with particular reference to encouraging the formation and development of small businesses. They are usually Business Link partners and provide a range of business services to new and established small firms including business advice and counselling, specialist financial services, business skills training and the provision of managed workspace.