Page last updated at 13:49 GMT, Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Economic regeneration in Wolverhampton

Conservative MP for Wolverhampton South West Paul Uppal highlighted the economy of Wolverhampton during a Westminster Hall debate on 8 February 2011 on the economic regeneration of the Black Country.

Wolverhampton has the highest proportion in England of working-age people with no qualifications, according to BBC-commissioned research.

Mr Uppal said he was concerned about the "punitive" nature of business rates on small businesses.

He praised the government's Localism Bill, saying it would "reduce the burden of nationally driven goals and targets".

However Labour's Emma Reynolds said the new restrictions on student visas could hinder the growth of the area.

Responding to the debate, Business Minister Mark Prisk said he was keen for more "local collaboration" and highlighted the importance of "employability skills" in apprenticeships.

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