The Treasury has confirmed plans to set up two new Enterprise Zones, where measures are put in place to stimulate business growth, in Lancashire and Hull & Humber. The plan is to mitigate the economic impact of arms producer BAE Systems’ plan to slash thousands of jobs in the regions. Eligible firms opening in the new designated zone will receive a business rates discount of up to £275,000 set over five years. The income from the business rates will be shared and retained by the local area for at least 25 years. In addition, the local authorities could also grant automatic planning permission, and businesses will be entitled to superfast broadband. The Treasury said: “The Government will work closely with the Local Enterprise Partnerships to develop strong and viable proposals for Enterprise Zones, with a view to enabling the zones to be up and running by April 2012.” The announcement is to bring the total number of Enterprise Zones to 23.