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Manifesto for the East

Manifesto for the East

“The next government has an opportunity to focus on the country’s key economic assets, many of which are distinctly present in the East, to meet looming societal challenges, and  drive productivity. The missing piece in the UK’s productivity puzzle has been the inability to  focus and harness institutional arrangements at the appropriate level, to lever investment, and to connect areas of opportunity and potential. With the right level of support the East of  England can lead the regional growth agenda.”

Steven Lynch MBE, Executive Director of the Eastern Powerhouse 

The East is one of the largest and most productive economies in the UK. It has the highest employment rate among all regions and nations and is one of only three regions that regularly makes a net contribution to the UK. Generating more tax revenues than it receives in public funding.

There is, however, huge untapped potential across the East. The region has significant advantages in knowledge-based industries and world class research institutions that can help drive productive growth in the UK. Widening access and opportunity to these industries is also vital to levelling up the stark disparities that exist across the East and ensuring that all parts of the region benefit from good growth.

The East of England needs a regional agenda if it is to fully realise its economic potential. The Eastern Powerhouse is calling for a new government to recognise the role of regional policy and correct the imbalance that currently exists between different regions in England. We are calling for parity with the other areas – the North, the Midlands, the South West and London – so that the East can benefit from the same level of government attention and funding. This include but is not limited to:

  • An independent Economic Assessment for the East of England. 

  • A non-statutory spatial plan to direct development and investment in infrastructure, including transport and housing. 

  • A special Investment fund for businesses, equivalent to those which government has provided elsewhere in England.

James Palmer, Chair of the Eastern Powerhouse, said:

“The East of England is already a 'world-leading' region. The East is best placed to deliver new growth in the key areas of renewable energy, science and technology. We will urge the next Government to recognise the importance of these industries and consider the detailed policy platform we have set out in our manifesto which is focused on what can be achieved here in the East of England.”

Press Release
Key findings:

Eastern Powerhouse's 'Manifesto for the East' This is the first ever regional manifesto focused on the key economic challenges facing the region and the policy solutions that can unlock growth, including:

▪ Investment in key infrastructure including housing, transport and the supply and storage of water, with commitments to bring forward new reservoirs and the Ely Area Capacity Enhancement programme.

▪ Reform of the planning process to speed up development and attract investment in the East.

▪ Positive conditions for business growth with business rate reform and tax incentives for relocation and employer investment in skills training.

▪ A pipeline of skills linking future skills to industrial strategy and priority growth sectors by investing in a regional skills observatory to identify and address skill shortages and skill gaps.

▪ An East of England Trade and Investment platform to expand the region’s global footprint, activating inward investment opportunities and exporting potential.

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