Image: BBC Image: BBC

Lord Sugar has been re-appointed as the government's enterprise tsar.

The businessman and Apprentice star will tour the UK to encourage enterprise and encourage businesses to take on more apprentices.

Lord Sugar held a similar role in Gordon Brown's government, but he left the Labour party last year, shortly before the general election.

The Amstrad founders said "not enough of our young people know about apprenticeships and what they offer, and too few feel empowered to set up their own business".

Skills minister Nick Boles welcomed Lord Sugar, saying he has "huge credibility among young people". Last year, he topped a list of business role models for students in the UK.

A number of business leaders also praised the appointment. Tim Sawyer, CEO of the Start Up Loans Company, said: “Having a successful figurehead in the world of business will no doubt encourage an entrepreneurial spirit across the country. Given Lord Sugar’s credibility and influence in this area we’d like to see enthusiasm amongst the next generation of business owners’ increase leaps and bounds."

Simon McVicker, head of policy at IPSE (the Association of Independent Professionals and Self Employed), called on Lord Sugar to promote and champion freelancing in his role as enterprise tsar. Mr McVicker said: "Lord Sugar’s experience in starting up his own business, as well as his outstanding reputation as one of the UK’s leading entrepreneurs, makes him a credible choice to promote enterprise in young people.

"We're pleased to see a government drive to encourage more young people to start up their own businesses. The success of this initiative will rest upon concrete action which can enable them to get their businesses off the ground."

He added: "Too often schools, colleges and universities focus on progression to full-time employment, with little focus on freelancing as viable career option. This is despite the rapid growth in young freelancers - an increase of over 50 per cent since 2008."