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Businesses: Technology

House of Lords written question – answered on 6th April 2011.

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Photo of Lord Hunt of Chesterton Lord Hunt of Chesterton Labour

To ask Her Majesty's Government what action they are taking to improve the technical competence and competitiveness of small and medium-sized enterprises.

Photo of Baroness Wilcox Baroness Wilcox The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills

We will support business-led technology innovation through the Technology Strategy Board which is moving forward to establish a network of elite Technology and Innovation Centres to commercialise new and emerging technologies and TSB will also deliver a national grant for R&D scheme, which is focused on supporting R&D projects in SMEs.

To complement this, the Skills Strategy, Skills for Sustainable Growth, sets out the Government's strategy for improving skills at the intermediate and technical level. It is why we have put apprenticeships at the heart of the FE and skills system and why we are expanding the number of places available.

Recognising that they are a key component in delivering our ambitions for a dynamic and competitive economy, we are increasing skills investment in SMEs by developing the leadership and management skills of managers in SMEs with high growth potential. We are also continuing to provide the SME Leadership and Management development programme with support focused on SMEs and social enterprises from April 2011.

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