HC Deb 16 December 1986 vol 107 cc430-1W
91. Mr. Lord

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what further steps he proposes to take to encourage small businesses in rural areas.

Mr. Waldegrave

The Government, through the Development Commission and its agency the Council for Small Industries in Rural Areas, already do much to help small businesses in rural areas. For example, they provide advice, loans and other services for over 20,000 small businesses employing some 100,000 people and have financed wholly or partly over 3 million sq ft of factory space. The Development Commission through CoSIRA expects to give grants worth over £1 million for the conversion of redundant buildings to industrial or service uses, and will continue to arrange technical and other training courses. CoSIRA has recently improved its marketing services and the commission has set up a scheme to help local enterprise agencies in rural areas, complementing the Department of Employment's scheme. To enable the commission to do still more, the Government made an extra £2 million available to the commission in the recent public expenditure settlement.

Forward to