§ 61. Mr. Chapman
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster if he will make a statement on progress on departmental co-operation and initiatives to tackle inner-city problems.
§ Mr. Kenneth Clarke
Government Departments are continuing to work together with business, local councils, voluntary organisations and local residents in the inner cities through a range of programmes and initiatives to bring about inner-city renewal. Government Departments co-operate through the urban programme and inner-city task forces to support projets which encourage enterprise and development and improve the environment. The Government effort is also co-ordinated by the five city action teams which promote joint initiatives and provide a local point of contact for companies and others wishing to be involved in inner-city renewal.
§ 72. Mr. Hanley
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster what contribution the private sector is making to his Department's inner-cities initiative.
§ Mr. Kenneth Clarke
The private sector is making a tremendous contribution to the success of our policies for the inner cities. within my own Department's inner-cities initiative we have—support from six clearing banks for task force development funds—secondments, including the secondment of the task force leader in Spitalfields by TSB England and Wales plc—backing by over 150 individual firms for the scheme of enterprise advice and training—"Headstart in the Inner Cities" which the Industrial Society is running for my Department and MSC—the setting up, by "Investors in Industry plc", of a £10 million investment fund for growing businesses in inner-city areas—involvement through Business in the Community with which we are collaborating in four task force areas on a neighbourhood partnership programme.
These are only a few examples. There are many other individual cases in which the private sector is involving itself in task force projects. I greatly welcome the work currently being taken forward by the CBI to develop still more ways in which industry and commerce can commit itself to the economic future of our cities.