London’s Royal Docks to become one of country’s largest Enterprise Zones

23 March 2011

The regeneration of London’s historic Royal Docks came a step closer today as 125 hectares of development land adjacent to City Airport and with excellent transport connections, were given Enterprise Zone status, following successful negotiations between the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, and the coalition government.

Thousands of jobs are expected to be created by this status which will provide a significant boost to the Mayor’s plans to transform the Royal Docks into a brand new district to live, work and invest in.

New businesses locating there during the term of the current Parliament will benefit from reduced business rates for five years and, most importantly, the business rates collected from those newly established businesses in the zone will be retained by London’s recently created Local Enterprise Partnership for the next 25 years. This will create an ongoing economic development fund which can be re-invested in promoting economic growth elsewhere in the capital or set against borrowings for investment.

Separately, Haringey Council has invited the Mayor to enter into discussions to explore establishing a Mayoral Development Corporation (MDC) in the N17 area of the borough – one of London’s most deprived neighbourhoods.  This would be London’s second MDC after the one proposed for the Olympic Park and would also be able to offer business rate incentives to new enterprises using powers being granted under the Localism Bill.  Talks between Haringey leaders and the local business community are set to start immediately.

Together these initiatives will help create significant economic growth for two of London’s key regeneration areas in the Upper and Lower Lea Valley. 

The Mayor of London Boris Johnson said: “This new status is the icing on the cake for my vision to return the Royals to their former glory as a thriving, vibrant place to live, work and visit. Already home to the colossal ExCeL Exhibition Centre and the new International Convention Centre, investors are beating a path to the door of golden opportunities arising in this emerging district.

“Now with the financial and regulatory breaks granted as an Enterprise Zone there will be even greater incentives for new businesses to set up shop and create a thriving new centre of enterprise in this important corner of the capital.”

Notes to editors

1. In February the Mayor announced the creation of London's Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) between City Hall and the capital’s boroughs and businesses which will cover the whole of the capital and will identify opportunities for business and economic growth, innovation, training and job creation. London's LEP will lead and consult on the creation of its Enterprise Zone.