Cornwall

Cut in Cornish businesses 'going bust' say Experian

None of Cornwall's 22,000 businesses have gone bust during a three-month period compared with 14 firms in the same time in 2011, a credit company has revealed.

The figures from Experian were for May, June and July.

In the wider South West, 234 firms were declared insolvent and across the UK 6,292 failed during the period.

A business expert said money from the EU and the support for small firms in the county had helped.

Since 2007, Cornwall has received £500m of European funding to help make the county as prosperous as other parts of Europe.

'Difficult conditions'

Tim Jones, chairman of Devon and Cornwall Business Council, said the convergence funding was helping the county to "buck the trend".

He said the number of "durable firms" and the support for small businesses was reflected in the figures.

However, Sandra Rothwell, head of economic development at Cornwall Council, said: "Clearly the economic conditions are very difficult for many, many businesses.

"In the overall scale of economic growth, we're still some way behind a number of places in the UK and in Europe, which is why we had the funding in the first place and we might get some more post 2013."

Cornwall's previous European funding programme, Objective One, ran from 2000-2006.

It was set up to help reduce differences in social and economic conditions within the EU.

From 2007, Cornwall has been receiving money from the EU convergence fund, which is aimed at speeding up economic development.

Ms Rothwell said: "From 1999 until 2009, Cornwall was the second fastest growing economy in the UK."

The county is currently bidding for its third round of money from the EU which would offer funding between 2014 to 2020.

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