Government to offer unused buildings to start-ups

Start-ups will be able to rent office space in unused government buildings at low rates for a year under plans prime minister David Cameron is set to announce.

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Start-ups will be able to rent office space in unused government buildings at low rates for a year under plans prime minister David Cameron is set to announce.

The government has 552 vacant property holdings as at 1 September 2011, and recently said that they would be marketed and either sub-let or sold in order to generate income for taxpayers.

In a speech in Leeds, Cameron is expected to reveal that up to 300 offices that are currently "idle" will be offered under the initiative.

"The British government has a huge stock of buildings at our disposal," Cameron is expected to say.

"The first priority for the ones we are not using is to sell them off but, in the meantime, many are going to be sitting idle. So let's match the capacity we have got with the need that is out there.

"Let's provide office space where we can to those who can use it."

Under the scheme, entrepreneurs and start-ups are expected to benefit from a low rate of rent for one year.

The government has pledged to support start-ups – in all sectors, including technology – to help boost the UK economy. The commitment started with the StartUp Britain campaign, launched last year.

In addition to the low-rent scheme, Cameron has today launched another campaign to inspire people to start their own businesses.

Called 'Business in You', the campaign aims to highlight case studies and provide resources to help budding entrepreneurs.

The Business in You website, features a 'finance finder' for example, as well as links to Mentorsme to help start-ups find a business mentor.