£28m available to West Yorkshire businesses

The Leeds City Region is the UK's largest economy and population centre outside of London

£28m available to West Yorkshire businesses

In a bid to boost jobs and growth, European funding totalling £28m has been made available for businesses across the Leeds City Region.

Available through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and administered by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government in partnership with the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (LEP), the purpose of the funding is to help businesses boost innovation, increase growth and strengthen export expertise.

The funding is part of the Leeds City Region’s £308 million European Structural and Investment Funds programme secured in 2014.

Roger Marsh OBE, Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (LEP) Chair and Chair of the Leeds City Region European Structural and Investment Funds Sub-Committee, said:

“Leeds City Region businesses operate in a global marketplace and by funding projects that can help them to be more innovative, more efficient and better digitally, we are helping to give them the edge they need to compete.

“Boosting innovation and harnessing digital technologies are core themes of the LEP and we’re looking forward to receiving bids for projects that not only create more and better jobs but also increase the economic strength of the City Region as a whole.

“We’ve had great success committing ERDF funding as a City Region with almost 90% of our allocation already assigned to business boosting projects.”

Figures released last month show that almost 90% of ERDF funding has already been committed in the City Region to promote business growth and help create more and better jobs.

The remaining funds are being made available to be allocated to projects that:

  • Promote research and innovation by helping to develop links between research and development centres and universities or by supporting increased technological and applied research.
  • Help develop IT products and services for businesses or increase the number of small and medium-sized enterprises making productive use of digital technologies.
  • Boost levels of entrepreneurship, particularly among underrepresented groups, so small and medium-sized enterprises can grow.
  • Support small and medium-sized enterprises to grow in regional, national and international markets and help them increase their levels of innovation.
  • Promote the increased use of renewable energy within public infrastructure and boost research and innovation within clean energy.

The LEP was the first local enterprise partnership in the country to launch its European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF) programme in 2014.