To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what steps he has taken to provide support for black and ethnic minority women entrepreneurs.
The Enterprise Strategy, published in March 2008 as part of the Budget, recognises the important role that all women can play in driving up enterprise activity in the UK and has proposed a number of measures that will support women entrepreneurs, including those from black and other ethnic minority backgrounds, and provide them with the knowledge and skills that will allow them to see enterprise and business ownership as open to them. Those measures include provision for £12.5 million of Government capital through a women's investment fund; women's business centre pilots; enhanced mentoring support; a new national enterprise centre of expertise; and activity aimed at opening up procurement opportunities to women owned businesses.
In addition, in June 2007, the Government announced the launch of the Ethnic Minority Business Task Force. As well as making recommendations to Government on the further development of policy, the task force will help to foster growth among ethnic minority firms and boost economic participation by ethnic minority entrepreneurs.