£2.6bn made available to help UK small businesses

Latest round of the European Regional Development Fund can now be drawn down by LEPs and local authorities...

Local organisations working with small businesses will now be able to apply for a share of £2.6bn from the latest round of the European Regional Development Fund.

The finance is intended to support innovation, help businesses grow and create jobs across local economies, bringing economic benefits to the wider area.

Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) and other local partners will work together to shape how the funding will be allocated and invested.

The European Regional Development Fund and the European Social Fund has made a total of £5bn available to invest in local projects nationwide. The Fund will mainly focus on research and innovation, supporting and promoting small and medium-sized enterprises and the creation of a low carbon economy.

James Wharton, local growth and Northern Powerhouse minister, said: “This funding will give the places a chance to contribute more to the national economy and unlock local potential.

“We want local partners to come forward with how they want to use this money to drive forward their economy. As part of our long-term economic plan this money will provide a big boost to businesses and help create numerous jobs locally that will also benefit people living in towns and villages nearby.”

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