Monday, November 1, 1999 Published at 07:16 GMT
Business: The Economy
Brown rallies British business
Gordon Brown: Businesses must innovate or be left behind
Chancellor Gordon Brown is calling for a new era of entrepreneurship - building on the reforms of Margaret Thatcher's government in the 1980s.
The creation of an enterprise culture in the UK was an often stated goal of Conservative governments between 1979 and 1997.
His priorities for the rest of the current parliament are to create full employment and to ensure that there is "enterprise open to all".
While acknowledging Baroness Thatcher's achievement in creating the "enterprise society", he will stress the need to go further, opening up entrepreneurship "to the many, not just the few".
"I want Britain to be, in every area, a creative, innovative and enterprising economy," he will say.
"The new economy will need more competition, more entrepreneurship, more flexibility and more long-term investment.
"Businesses, indeed countries, which fail to adapt, reform and lead the way will simply be left behind.
"We will all, together, have to raise our productivity, open up competition and improve our skills."
In that vein, Mr Brown will announce a scheme to give tax relief on share options for executives from small and medium-sized companies with assets up to about £15m.
The plan is intended to encourage entrepreneurship and is expected to cost the Inland Revenue up to £40m a year.
There will also be references in Mr Brown's speech to some of the themes of next week's pre-Budget report, including building up UK workforce skills levels.
CBI director general Adair Turner said such a move would simply stoke consumer demand, leading to further interest rate increases which would hit exporters who were already struggling due to the high value of the pound.
He also urged the chancellor to consider targeting taxes better, including switching from tax on fuel to road usage charging.
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