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Enterprise Bill 2007 - Consultation Document 17 August 2007

Summary

The principal objective of the Enterprise Bill is to enable the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to support, where desired, a wider range of both types of business and types of financial support than that offered at present. These changes are required as the economy continues to evolve rapidly and the DTI needs the ability to respond quickly and flexibly to economic need.

The Industry Board Act 1981 has provided the DTI with the powers to make financial assistance available to businesses that fall under the definition of “industrial undertaking” as defined in that Act. This definition has been updated on a number of occasions, most recently in 2001. While it has served the DTI well, the definition is unable to be extended further without it becoming too far removed from the Act’s original intention. This new Bill is intended to replace the Industry Board Act to provide primary legislation that is more suited and flexible to support the needs of the Isle of Man’s economy today and in the future. It will enable the DTI to continue to support the range of businesses currently assisted and to encourage the attraction of new inward investment.

The Enterprise Bill 2007 is progressing through the Legislative Branches (currently in the House of Keys). The Bill is primarily enabling legislation and sets a framework for providing financial assistance to businesses to encourage economic growth and diversification of the Isle of Man’s economy.

The DTI administers a number of schemes offering financial support to businesses. The main scheme is the Financial Assistance Scheme, with a budget of £3.5m in 2007/08. Under the Enterprise Bill 2007, the operation of the Financial Assistance Scheme is required to be set out in Regulations and Guidelines:

  • The Regulations will set out what constitutes an “eligible business” and are intended to be the standard requirements that all businesses will be expected to meet before they can be considered for support.
  • The Guidelines are intended to set out the DTI’s broader policy in terms of supported and excluded sectors, the types of financial assistance available and how the Financial Assistance Scheme generally is to be operated

Click here to download the complete document.

This consultation paper seeks to provide an opportunity for comment on these two important documents by interested parties to inform consideration as to the final form of the Regulations and the Guidelines. The paper asks a number of questions and replies to the questions should be sent not later than 5 October 2007 to:

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