Tuesday, December 20, 2011

News: Companies urged to get in the zone


Companies looking to take advantage of the financial benefits of the Sheffield City Region (SCR) Enterprise Zone are being urged to put forward their ideas.

Status was secured for zone in July and it will be based on a series of key sites along the M1 that will focus growth within the advanced engineering and technology sectors.

In Rotherham, around 15 hectares of land at the Advanced Manufacturing Park at Waverley and around four hectares of land at Templeborough, are set to offer a business rate discount worth up to £275,000 per eligible business over a five year period.

In addition, the zone will also be able to offer Enhanced Capital Allowances (ECAs) that present a massive opportunity to attract major inward investment to the region.

100 per cent capital allowances for plant and machinery investments are available and the Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) is targeting around £300m of investment between April 2012 and March 2017.

As part of a wider approach, the LEP has agreed that ECAs will be used to attract inward investment, as well as enable strategic investments from companies already based in the city region that would not otherwise happen, or that would be accelerated by ECA incentives.

The LEP is now looking for more information on the planned investments by companies already based in the Sheffield City Region.

James Newman, chair of the Sheffield City Region LEP, said: "If you are an eligible company with plans for major capital investment (over £50m) in plant and machinery over the next five years and the proposed investment will or could take place within the designated Enterprise Zone ECA sites then we would like to hear from you."

Expressions of interest need to be submitted by January 6 in order to give the LEP an early indication of levels of interest from locally based companies.

In another boost for development in the city region, the LEP looks set to use £7m from the government's Growing Places Fund to establish a JESSICA for South Yorkshire that would lever in £13m of European funding.

A JESSICA fund is a financial engineering mechanism used to create a revolving fund that could be used for regeneration projects such as the creation of new commercial floorspace, brownfield redevelopment or investment in infrastructure.

Sheffield City Region website


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