§ Mr. Nicholas Bennett
To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will make a statement as to the eligibility of businesses in receipt of business enterprise allowance funding to(a) engage as sub-contractors and (b) engage sub-contractors.
§ Mr. Eggar
The aim of the enterprise allowance scheme is to help unemployed people create new small businesses that would otherwise not exist. Most labour-only sub-contracting arrangements are ruled outside the scope and the spirit of the scheme. However scheme support may be approved where applicants can show they will provide specialist expertise or services to a number of other companies not normally retaining these "in-house". Existing EAS participants are free to engage subcontractors or employ other staff.