HC Deb 20 April 2004 vol 420 cc465-6W
Mrs. Curtis-Thomas

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many small businesses are registered in Crosby; and what the percentage change has been since 1997. [164412]

Nigel Griffiths

Barclays Bank's latest survey of business creation, published on 31 March 2004, includes non-VAT registered firms, and shows that there were 115,000 business start-ups in England and Wales, including 500 in Sefton local authority (in which Crosby is a constituency) in the fourth quarter of 2003. The latest yearly Barclays figures show 465,000 business start-ups in England and Wales in 2003, the highest figure since the survey began in 1988. Data for local authorities are not available for before 2003.

There were 5,380 businesses registered for VAT in Sefton local authority at the end of 2002. This represents a 7 per cent increase since the start of 1997 when there were 5,040 VAT-registered businesses. VAT registration data for the end of 2003 will be available in Autumn 2004.

It is important to note that VAT registration data do not capture all business activity. Businesses are unlikely to be registered if they fall below the compulsory VAT threshold, which has risen in each year since 1997. Similarly, businesses that de-register will not necessarily have closed. Only 1.8 million out of 3.8 million enterprises were registered for VAT at the start of 2002.

Mrs. Curtis-Thomas

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what the total Entrepreneurial Activity index for(a) Crosby and (b) England is; and if she will make a statement. [164413],

Nigel Griffiths

The Total Entrepreneurial Activity (TEA) index is not produced by government, but is a measure used by the London Business School to compare international rates of entrepreneurial activity as part of its annual Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM).

The latest TEA index, for 2003, is 6.5 per cent for England and 4.7 per cent for the North West. The UK was the only other G8 country apart from the United States to have seen a major recovery in levels of entrepreneurial activity in 2003 following the overall drop in 2002.

The UK GEM report does not provide a breakdown for areas smaller than the area covered by Government Office region. There is, therefore no TEA figure for Crosby.

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