Tue 2 December 2014
The UK boasts more entrepreneurial activity than any other European country, according to a new report, coming fourth in the world.
It has beaten neighbouring Germany by seven places and France by eight.
The Global Entrepreneurship Index (GEI) profiles and benchmarks the entrepreneurial ecosystems of 130 countries.
Now in its fifth year, the index found that the top-performing entrepreneurial ecosystems in the world are the four largest English-speaking countries: the US, Canada, and Australia, followed by three Scandinavian nations - Sweden, Denmark and Iceland.
Taiwan is in eighth place, while Singapore ranks tenth, joining the GEI top ten for the first time.
Countries have been ranked on 14 "pillars", from the level of start-up support available to the effects of industry competition and the availability of trained staff.
The UK's showing has improved steadily over the past three years: in 2012 the UK ranked 14th and in 2013 it ranked ninth.
Business secretary Vince Cable said of the GEI: "From building cutting-edge robots to designing satellites, British entrepreneurs succeed through combining innovation with strong business acumen.
"That is why despite tough economic times, we have jumped 10 places in just two years to be the number one enterprising nation in Europe. Our industrial strategy will continue this legacy by providing an environment where businesses can innovate and have confidence to invest in new ideas for long-term growth."