Below is the text of the statement made by Kelly Tolhurst, the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, in the House of Commons on 26 March 2019.

The UK consistently ranks as one of the most entrepreneurial nations in the world, but there is more we can do to break down the barriers that stop some of our best and brightest young people from all backgrounds starting their own business.

Our modern industrial strategy sets out our plan to make the UK the best place to start and grow a business. We want to ensure we are driving forward a thriving entrepreneurial culture across all corners of society. Harnessing untapped talent will be key to achieving this.

To help us realise this ambition, my Department has this month launched an independent review into how best to tackle the barriers facing aspiring young entrepreneurs, aged 18-30, in England. The review will look at issues including access to finance, access to advice, support and business networks so that we can close the gap between entrepreneurial ambition and reality.

It will also look at the support on offer to young entrepreneurs from disadvantaged and low-income backgrounds and adds to efforts by the Government to improve diversity in the business community, following the Rose review into female entrepreneurship published earlier this month.

The review will be led by Nick Stace, chief executive of the Prince’s Trust. To support the review, Government and the Prince’s Trust are bringing together a steering group comprised of entrepreneurs with experience and insight. Details of this group will be set out in the coming weeks.

The review will make recommendations to Ministers later this year about what can be done to ensure young entrepreneurs are properly supported as they start building the businesses of the future.