More than three quarters of businesses in the West Midlands plan turnover growth over the next two years.

But according to the ICAEW Enterprise Survey 2010, the region’s businesses are more likely than those in the UK overall to say that their competitiveness has been adversely affected over the previous year by issues such as Government measures and changes in interest rates.

In common with businesses in the UK overall, around half of the businesses surveyed in the West Midlands believe that the regulatory and taxation environment in the UK is “business friendly”.

But they are more likely than businesses in the UK overall to view business tax changes as a hindrance to their operation and development – 63 per cent compared with 49 per cent for businesses in the UK overall.

ICAEW regional director Nigel Hastilow said: ““Businesses are now putting the crisis and the period of negative growth behind them.

“However, while that is good news, it means businesses will be confronted by similar challenges to those they faced pre-crisis.

“When developed countries resume normal growth levels, the demand for raw materials will intensify.

“This will require business leaders and policy makers to take different approaches, increasing focus on sustainability.”

The survey reveals that levels of involvement in international activities among businesses in the West Midlands are generally similar to those seen in businesses in the UK overall.

But businesses in the region are significantly less likely than businesses in the UK overall to say that they currently adapt their products and services to markets outside the UK.

Mr Hastilow said: “The 2010 survey shows West Midlands businesses are less globally active than some in other UK regions.

“With Asian and other developing countries economies steaming ahead in the past year, making them attractive for expansion, there is a danger that west Midlands businesses will miss out on potential growth opportunities.”