Teignbridge businesses could be in line for an EU funding boost after parts of the district were included in a draft map for Assisted Area Status.
Five Teignbridge wards covering parts of Newton Abbot, Ipplepen, Coffinswell and Kingskerswell have been included in the Assisted Area Status Map (AAS) that will cover the next European Union funding period from 2014 to 2020.
Assisted Area Status permits the granting of additional financial support to small businesses and large enterprises in economically disadvantaged locations.
The wards included are Buckland and Milber, College, Bushell, Ipplepen and Kerswell-with-Combe.
Teignbridge worked with Devon County Council, the Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership and MPs to make the case for a significant increase in the areas of Devon that are covered.
If Teignbridge is to be included in the map it will help the deliver regeneration initiatives to improve the local economy, attract and retain jobs and provide even greater investment opportunities.
This support is to encourage business in these communities to grow, innovate and thrive, which can positively affect these locations and the whole UK economy.
The status recognises places where there is significant potential for business growth and that there are robust partnerships in place to address the challenges.
It follows Teignbridge District Council’s response to a Government consultation on which areas should qualify for AAS from 2014 to 2020.
A second stage of consultation is due to start soon, during which areas will be able to build on their case.
Cllr Jeremy Christophers, Leader of Teignbridge District Council, said: “We are absolutely delighted to be included in the Government’s initial report. We worked with Devon County Council and the Local Enterprise Partnership to build a convincing case for the different areas.
“Teignbridge is positive about jobs and skills. We have invested in our economic development teams when other councils have reduced this service.
“By backing the people of Teignbridge and giving them the opportunity to work hard for a better future, the Government has listened and in turn they are prepared to invest in our area.
“I am delighted with our hard working economic development team and I would like to thank them for their dedication to our local prosperity.”
The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills will consider the responses, before UK ministers agree the final areas, which will be submitted to the European Commission — the executive body of the European Union — to ensure they meet European state aid rules.
A final Assisted Area Status Map will be submitted to the European Commission for approval in March. The consultation runs until Friday, February 7 2014.
The new Assisted Areas are expected to be in effect from July 1, 2014.
(from a press release)
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