Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Enterprise zones - a brilliant idea

So, I'm pleased to see that the government has just announced the locations of the latest enterprise zones. There are going to be 21 enterprise zones in total and I think they're absolutely brilliant.

Basically an enterprise zone is an area where ultra high speed broadband is provided, where planning regulations are relaxed and where there are business rate and tax breaks worth up to £235,000. The basic idea is that they will attract new business to these enterprise zones and create new wealth and new jobs.

Business have been tried in the past, by Margaret Thatcher, but back then they were mostly ineffective and were more a way for the government to claim they were fostering growth rather than having any real practical value. For example, quite often the enterprise zones simply became retail parks - providing some jobs - but in the process they often put local retailers out of business so the actual net benefit was quite frequently minimal.

It's good to see that this government has apparently learned the lessons from the past. For example, the new enterprise zones are located where there are already some businesses and are going to be set up to encourage manufacturing and technology growth as opposed to just supermarkets.

Another brilliant aspect of this is where they are located. By locating so many of them north of the north-south economic divide then hopefully they'll go some way to restoring the historic economic balance between north and south. I should point out though, that the enterprise zones are only being introduced in England - this is because these kind of growth stimulating measures are devolved matters for Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

All in all, hopefully these enterprise zones will attract investment and boost local economies across the country. They are exactly the kind of boost the economy need right now. My only regret is that a) there aren't more measures like this and b) that they're only being used now in the bad times when they could have been used in the good years when rebalancing the economy would have been much easier.

6 comments:

  1. What a load of party political clap trap, enterprise zones are a tried, tested and failed policy. They're a gimmick that has failed everywhere except in situations where the government has pumped in significant amounts of wonga in the form of infrastructure. These zones will be as much use as the coalition's fiddling with NI outside of the South East - a policy that has created about 4 jobs.

    "b) that they're only being used now in the bad times when they could have been used in the good years when rebalancing the economy would have been much easier."

    Yawn, I do find it so utterly tiresome when party political hacks write about something of which they obviously know nothing.

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  2. @Anonymous,

    I suggest you read the post again. There is considerable difference between the type of enterprise zones being used today and the type of ones introduced by Thatcher. For example, they are being set up in places which already contain manufacturing or technology companies.

    I also find it amusing to be called a party political hack when I'm actually an engineer - as such, technology, manufacturing and ways to stimulate them are interests of mine.

    Finally, in future please have the courage to at least sign your comments with some sort of persistent online identity.

    ReplyDelete
  3. " There is considerable difference between the type of enterprise zones being used today and the type of ones introduced by Thatcher. For example, they are being set up in places which already contain manufacturing or technology companies."

    B*llocks, the differences between Osborne's zones and Thatcher's are minimal. Such zones have been tried all over the world with all different variations and they've not proven successful in anything other than moving jobs a few miles down the round. But time will tell as it already has with the coalitions other economic policies.

    "I also find it amusing to be called a party political hack when I'm actually an engineer - as such, technology, manufacturing and ways to stimulate them are interests of mine."

    Anybody who blindly spouts the party line is a party political hack.

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  4. @Anonymous

    Final warning: leave another unsigned comment and I will remove *all* of your comments. And, before you complain, my blog, my rules.

    I'd also point out that saying "bollocks" does not constitute any kind of valid counter argument.

    As for spouting the party line, there isn't a party line on this issue - or if their is, no one's told me what it is.

    Do grow up.

    ReplyDelete
  5. "Final warning: leave another unsigned comment and I will remove *all* of your comments. And, before you complain, my blog, my rules."

    I note that when I commented anon on your post regarding a conference motion about ESA, with several suggestions for improvement, you were more than happy to engage. As an aside, I was disappointed to see your motion had been neutered by the party and contained a rather silly and ill informed rant by somebody at the end.

    You know perfectly well who is commenting, how else can you delete "*all*" two of my comments? So you merely reinforce my earlier criticism that you just post the party line and when challenged you hide behind admin privilege. I don't really care if you delete my comments or not you're the person I'm talking to not the half dozen or so other people who disturb your blog.

    "I'd also point out that saying "bollocks" does not constitute any kind of valid counter argument."

    Erm...your blog post contains no valid argument to counter, you could have posted just the title ("enterprise zones brilliant idea") and the effect would have been the same.

    "As for spouting the party line, there isn't a party line on this issue - or if their is, no one's told me what it is."

    LOL, the party line is quite simple, you toe it almost every post - LibDem/coalition policy = good.

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  6. I view comments on the ESA threads a special case as many of the people affected by the issue are so scared of Atos that they are reluctant to leave any online comments that could possibly identify them in any way. Whether that concern is justified or not, I have decided to make an exception because so many people feel that way.

    If I were to make the commenting system more restrictive then I could identify exactly who posted each individual comment. As it is, I keep my comment system more relaxed so that people do not need to register an account of some description in order to comment.

    So I can't know which previous comments you have made but I know that all the Anonymous comments on this thread have been made by the same individual. I can't delete comments you have made on a previous thread but I can and will delete your comments on here unless you adopt some sort of consistent online identity - what exactly is so hard about signing each post with a pseudonym?

    My argument, both in the comments and in the blogpost, is that the enterprise zones introduced by Thatcher differ significantly from those introduced by this government. This is also born out by the article linked to in the first sentence of the blogpost. You are perfectly free to disagree, but saying "bollocks" does not count as a reasoned counter argument.

    Leaving aside the fact that I'm perfectly entitled to agree with the coalition if I want to, I suggest you read the following links if you're really so utterly stupid as to think I never disagree with what the government is doing:

    http://thepotterblogger.blogspot.com/2010/11/why-im-still-lib-dem.html
    http://thepotterblogger.blogspot.com/2010/12/motion-of-no-confidence-in-nick-clegg.html
    http://thepotterblogger.blogspot.com/2010/11/account-of-demonstration-against.html
    http://thepotterblogger.blogspot.com/2011/08/im-ashamed-to-be-british.html

    Or, if you can't be bothered to read those, think on this. If I agreed with everything the government is doing then why exactly would I be trying to change what the government is doing with regards to ESA?

    But, at the end of the day, remember this. This is my blog, and if I want to write nothing but posts kissing Cameron's arse then I will. And if I want to write nothing but posts denouncing the coalition then I will as well. But what I choose to write is my business and mine alone. If you don't like it then don't read it. It's as simple as that.

    And I don't care what your next comment on this thread is, if you don't sign it, then it's getting deleted before I even read it.

    ReplyDelete

I'm indebted to Birkdale Focus for the following choice of words:

I am happy to address most contributions, even the drunken ones if they are coherent, but I am not going to engage with negative sniping from those who do not have the guts to add their names or a consistent on-line identity to their comments. Such postings will not be published.

Anonymous comments with a constructive contribution to make to the discussion, even if it is critical will continue to be posted. Libellous comments or remarks I think may be libellous will not be published.

I will also not tolerate personation so please do not add comments in the name of real people unless you are that person. If you do not like these rules then start your own blog.

Oh, and if you persist in repeating yourself despite the fact I have addressed your point I may get bored and reject your comment.

The views expressed in comments are those of the poster, not me.