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Budget 2011: Royal Docks to become London ‘enterprise zone’

The Royal Docks in east London was revealed as the future site for one of the country’s largest ‘enterprise zone’ following today’s budget announcement

The 125-hectare Docklands site will benefit from reduced business rates for five years while all income from new rate-paying businesses will stay within the managing ‘Local Enterprise Partnership’ (LEPs) for the next 25 years.

London mayor Boris Johnson said:  ‘This new status is the icing on the cake for my vision to return the Royals to their former glory as a thriving, vibrant place to live, work and visit.

‘Already home to the colossal ExCeL Exhibition Centre and the new International Convention Centre, investors are beating a path to the door of golden opportunities arising in this emerging district.’

‘Now with the financial and regulatory breaks granted as an Enterprise Zone there will be even greater incentives for new businesses to set up shop and create a thriving new centre of enterprise in this important corner of the capital.’

Similar benefits will apply to a further 20 LEPs, announced Chancellor George Osborne in his budget today.

The first batch of ten zones will be established in ‘urban areas of highest need but also potential’ he said

These include: Birmingham and Solihull; Leeds; Liverpool; Greater Manchester; the Tees Valley, Tyneside, the Bristol area, the Black Country; Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire; and Sheffield.

Osborne added: ‘Helping all parts of our country succeed is also the purpose behind the new Enterprise Zones we launch today.

‘Businesses will get up to 100 [per cent] discount on rates, new superfast broadband and the potential to use enhanced capital allowances in zones where there is a strong focus on manufacturing.

‘In return for radically reduced planning restrictions, we will let local authorities keep all business rate growth in their zone for a period of at least 25 years to spend on development priorities.

‘I want Local Enterprise Partnerships all over the country to come forward with proposals.’

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