E&Y’s sixth annual Enterpriser survey, which questioned 417 CEO’s, chairmen, FDs and CFOs, revealed that, despite being more optimistic than ever about the UK economy, 68% of those questioned felt the UK has no more of an enterprise culture today than it had five years ago.
Only 24% were found to be able to identify a positive change in culture since 1999.
Some 70% of the entrepreneurs questioned felt the 2004 Budget had been unsuccessful in aiding enterprise in the UK, while a worryingly high 61% said they were unaware of government funds aimed at supporting enterprise or felt these too had been unsuccessful.
And 58% of those polled were either unaware of the Enterprise Act or deemed it ‘unsuccessful’.
Research & development tax credits were slightly more popular, with 42% deeming them successful compared to 34% who said they had been unsuccessful and 10% who were unaware of them.
Despite the introduction of various initiatives aimed at encouraging entrepreneurship in the UK over the past 12 months, 60% of leading entrepreneurs were found to still feel that the government gives ‘low’ or ‘no priority at all’ to their cause. However, this is slightly more positive than last year – down from 69% in 2003.
Les Clifford, head of entrepreneurial growth markets at E&Y, said: ‘Once again it appears that despite some commendable efforts to inspire and encourage enterprise in the UK, the government is failing to communicate its initiatives properly and to engage effectively with the individuals they are aimed at.’
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