Chamber responds to the Chancellor’s Infrastructure Investment Announcement

Speaking on the Chancellor’s Infrastructure Investment announcement made on 23rd October 2021, Chair of West and North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce, Amanda Beresford, said: 

“Whilst these investments are a most welcome start in the rollout of Government’s levelling-up agenda, the Chamber is keen to stress that a commitment for a full, complete delivery of HS2 and Northern Powerhouse Rail in tandem must follow.” 

“The current ambiguity regarding these essential projects acts as an unnecessary hindrance as we move towards full economic recovery. The ongoing delay to the publication of the Integrated Rail Plan is a cause of concern for leaders across the North, and the hope is that these investments do not come at the expense of wider projects.” 

“In order for West and North Yorkshire, not least the North as a whole, to unlock it’s true economic potential, Government must fully commit to implementing the connectivity it promised in its 2019 election manifesto.  We hope the long-awaited Integrated Rail Plan will confirm that both NPR and HS2 will go ahead as planned, reassuring businesses and investors alike.”  

Mark Goldstone, Head of Policy and Business Representation for the Chamber, said: 

“The Chancellor’s recent announcements regarding improved funding terms for local infrastructure in cities outside of London mark an important first step towards levelling up the regions. We would encourage Government to follow up on these investments by removing confusion over the scale of this Government’s commitment to levelling up the North in the form of wider longer scale infrastructure investments.” 

“It is claimed that delay of the high-speed rail project is costing the North, and therefore the country as a whole, around £5bn a year in lost growth. We call on the Chancellor to recognise the scale of the opportunity that is available, and compound these encouraging commitments with an assurance that they do not come at the cost of afore-promised projects.” 

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