Budget 2011: Government announces 21 enterprise zones


Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne has announced a total of 21 enterprise zones, not the 10 that were reportedly expected.

Businesses operating within these zones will benefit from 100 per cent discount rates on super-fast broadband, Osborne said during his budget speech today.

The zones will be established in various cities across the UK, including Birmingham, Sheffield, Leeds and Manchester.

London Mayor Boris Johnson will choose where the capital city's zone will be established.

A further 10 locations will be announced in the summer as the Government seeks to boost economic progress in the UK during difficult times.

The enterprise zones will be similar to those introduced by previous Conservative Governments in the 80s and 90s.

They will offer tax breaks and deregulation on top of next-generation broadband to help firms grow.

Osborne said he wanted to make the UK the best place in the world to start a business, which will be music the ears of youthful tech companies looking to set up shop in the country.

He said today's Budget was about reforming the nation's economy so it had "enduring growth and jobs in the future."

"Britain has lost ground in the world's economy and needs to catch up," Osborne told the House of Commons.

"This is a budget built on sound money that will benefit enterprise."

For all the news on today's budget, head here.

Tom Brewster

Tom Brewster is currently an associate editor at Forbes and an award-winning journalist who covers cyber security, surveillance, and privacy. Starting his career at ITPro as a staff writer and working up to a senior staff writer role, Tom has been covering the tech industry for more than ten years and is considered one of the leading journalists in his specialism.

He is a proud alum of the University of Sheffield where he secured an undergraduate degree in English Literature before undertaking a certification from General Assembly in web development.