Scottish agencies under fire

Scottish regional and local development agencies set up to promote business are stifling enterprise and prosperity, according to a survey published last week by Scotland’s Federation of Small Businesses. The survey of members, which included more than 200 small manufacturing firms, singled out local authorities and Scottish Enterprise and its network of 13 autonomous local […]

Scottish regional and local development agencies set up to promote business are stifling enterprise and prosperity, according to a survey published last week by Scotland’s Federation of Small Businesses.

The survey of members, which included more than 200 small manufacturing firms, singled out local authorities and Scottish Enterprise and its network of 13 autonomous local enterprise companies for ineffective or poor service.

It said 48% of companies surveyed claimed the network had no effect on their business.

John Downie, Scottish Enterprise’s parliamentary officer, called the survey a `damning indictment’ of the overall service provided by local authorities and enterprise networks.

In response, Scottish Enterprise quoted a survey which showed 80% of customers were satisfied. Last year it helped start 5,433 businesses and carried out more than 14,000 projects with businesses, it added.