Commenting on the announcement by Nick Clegg on the opening of the third round of applications for the Regional Growth Fund, Dr Adam Marshall, Director of Policy at the British Chambers of Commerce, said:“We welcome the extra £1bn that the government is making available to help improve the business environment in the English regions. We know that business is good for local communities because it creates jobs and prosperity. Allocations from the fund will help improve local conditions and clear the way for more private investment to follow.
 
“We are encouraged that ministers have committed to addressing some of the criticism that arose during previous bidding rounds, such as the complexity of the application process itself. We will watch carefully to ensure that strong applications do not get caught up in red tape or unnecessary delays.
 
“Over the coming weeks, the government must go further to improve the business environment, and to encourage companies to invest. As we approach the Budget, ministers must follow through on the delivery of key infrastructure projects, and do everything they can to help companies in all parts of the country build the confidence they need to expand, invest and create jobs.”