“Lanarkshire Business week is an opportunity for start-ups and established companies alike to get together and participate in an exciting programme of events, workshops and general networking. I’m disappointed though that there aren’t events scheduled for East Kilbride and I hope this will be rectified in the future.
“Local statistics show how successful local businesses are – the Scottish Government’s Small Business Bonus Scheme has provided relief to local businesses and the number of enterprises with fewer than 50 employees benefiting from that relief has increased by 11% since January 2011 – 4000 jobs in total. In East Kilbride, the business count has increased by almost a quarter from 1435 to 1760 in the past five years. We should be supporting local businesses to help stimulate growth, sustaining much-needed jobs.
“Latest statistics from the Scottish Parliament Information Centre show that under the SNP government, the number of apprentices is just shy of 200,000.
“The government’s original target of reaching 25,000 Modern Apprenticeships each year has been met, and the target is now 30,000 per year by 2021. Those gains have resulted in the highest percentage of school leavers in work, training or education reaching an all-time high, with youth employment at its highest for a decade.
“Later this week I look forward to visiting two local businesses – the TUV NEL and East Kilbride Group Training Association to learn about the benefits of taking on apprentices.”