Posts tagged infrastructure projects
Chief secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander has announced the creation of a new infrastructure forum which will give business leaders a direct line to government and boost the trades.
Speaking at the Liberal Democrat Conference yesterday, Mr Alexander said the National Infrastructure Plan Strategic Engagement Forum (NIPSEF) will bring government and industry together to help deliver the UK’s infrastructure needs.
NIPSEF is expected to be launched this autumn. It will bring together government and key trade bodies which will work with CITBConstructionSkills, the sector skills council for the industry.
The infrastructure alliance will include the Association for Consultancy and Engineering, the Civil Engineering Contractors Association, the Construction Products Association and the Institution of Civil Engineers.
It will be co-chaired by Mr Alexander and the chief executive of the Association for Consultancy and Engineering, Nelson Ogunshakin.
Mr Ogunshakin said: “The National Infrastructure Plan is the government’s most important strategic programme to deliver infrastructure, the core driver to UK economic growth.
“Delivering such an ambitious programme of infrastructure expansion on this scale means bringing government and industry together to successfully achieve this goal.
“This new National Infrastructure Plan Strategic Engagement Forum will place the expertise of industry at the heart of government to make that happen.”
Nick Clegg has announced plans to give some of England’s biggest cities new powers and extra cash in an attempt to boost employment and restore economic growth, the BBC reported today.
During a visit to Yorkshire, the Deputy Prime Minister revealed the government will transfer more economic controls to local authorities under city schemes which he called ‘groundbreaking deals… freeing cities from Whitehall control’.
Extra powers will be given to the cities of Birmingham, Bristol, Newcastle, Leeds, Nottingham and Sheffield as deals for Liverpool and Manchester were already agreed earlier this year.
Deputy Prime Minister Clegg said: “Everyone in these eight core cities will feel the benefits – from young people looking for jobs, to businesses looking to expand.”
Under the current system, councils running England’s major cities have to lobby central governments if they want additional investment to fund major infrastructure projects.
However, under the new city deals, guaranteed funding will be provided for the city authorities to spend as they choose. This is expected to will cut red tape and make it easier for businesses to deliver major development projects in the future.
Hilary Benn, Shadow Communities and Local Government Secretary, said: “Labour strongly supports local communities being given more powers – indeed I have been calling for this for some time.
“These city deals represent an important victory for local people and local government. And many people think that local government will do a better job at looking after their local economies and boosting skills than the Tory-led government is doing nationally.”
If you live in Birmingham, Bristol, Leeds, Newcastle, Nottingham or Sheffield, how do you think the new deals could help you/ your business? Share your thoughts by commenting here or raining your voice on our Facebook page.
The Confederation of British Industry (CBI) has urged the government to boost economic growth by giving a greater emphasis on infrastructure projects in the UK.
In a new report published today, the CBI has recommended to the Treasury to enhance the credit rating of government construction schemes and raise public funds that will secure private business investment, unlocking billions of pounds to the UK economy.
According to the CBI Director-General, John Cridland, infrastructure investment will offer the UK a sustainable growth development that businesses need.
Mr Cridland said: “As this report makes clear, if we want to see the billions of pounds needed to upgrade our ageing infrastructure and secure jobs and growth for the long-term, the Government must make smarter use of limited public finances. By underpinning and lifting the credit rating of certain infrastructure assets, it can make them less risky and more attractive to investors.
The CBI says that harnessing just a 1 per cent increase from the UK’s pension fund will give a ‘vital boost’ to the UK’s underfunded infrastructure networks and make them more attractive to investors.
Do you welcome the recent report by the CBI that urges the government to make significant improvements to infrastructure schemes in the UK? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment below or adding your voice on our Facebook Page:
Homebuilders and property developers will benefit from a new £5 million investment for Bristol’s Temple Quarter Enterprise Zone which will bring thousands of new jobs in the area, the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) revealed today.
Bristol City Council will invest £3.8 million to buy Brunel’s Old Station building and bring the property to public ownership whilst detailed plans for reconstruction and building work are taking place.
The HCA said part of the building could be used for the rail industry to improve services between Bristol and London, with the remaining space used to build conference facilities to support the growth of creative industries within the Enterprise.
Network Rail Western’s route Managing Director, Patrick Hallgate, welcomed the move by the HCA and Bristol City Council to improve railway facilities in Bristol and deal with the continually increasing demand.
Mr Hallgate said: “We need to grow the railway to cater for this boom and there is potential to do so by redeveloping the land, buildings and railway in the Bristol area. A shared vision and firm support from key players such as HCA and the council will be instrumental in helping us shape a successful rail strategy that also fits in with the enterprise zone’s vision for the future of Bristol.”
With the remaining £1.2 million, HCA announced it will support the relocation of Pest Control Depot and its existing facilities to a new purpose build depot elsewhere in the city. It has been forecasted that both projects will create 17,000 jobs over the next 25 years and deliver sustainable economic growth within the area.
HCA Head of Area, David Warburton, said this vital investment will create great opportunities for a number of organisations, provide improved workplace for thousands of individuals and improve public facilities.
Mr Warburton said: “It’s vital that Brunel’s Old Station is used to its full potential, whether that be to support Network Rail Western’s plans for improved transport links, or provide improved workspace and facilities for companies who want to be based here. Working with the City Council to acquire the building will allow us to do that.”
What is your reaction to the investment by HCA to improve facilities in Bristol and encourage economic growth? If you live locally, how are you going to benefit from this investment? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment below:
The business lobby group is advising the government in a new report today, “Minor measures, major results – Fine tuning the major infrastructure planning system”, to make further improvements to large infrastructure projects and ease the pre-application process of planning and construction work for UK businesses.
The CBI is also urging the government to simplify non-planning consents and allow developers to train case workers who will participate and give advice to applicants at pre-application stages prior to construction work.
The CBI believes that measures for improving transparency, encouraging proactivity in case workers and developing the relationship between planners and businesses will help economic growth and return investors’ confidence.
Deputy Director-General at CBI, Dr Neil Bentley, approved the pro-business measures the government has taken in recent years to encourage economic growth, but he said that more decisive action is needed to help major infrastructure projects in Britain.
Mr Bentley said: “Businesses approve of the government’s reforms to our major infrastructure planning system to streamline planning decisions, but it’s vital we don’t lose momentum while these significant changes take hold. Too many applications are still at the initial stages at a time when we need major investment in our infrastructure.
“We’re suggesting ways the government can fine-tune the system to spur on much-needed new infrastructure such as, energy plants, railway lines, airports, roads, ports and waste facilities.
“Investing in major infrastructure projects will bring big rewards for our economy, with new jobs and growth. But investors both at home and abroad must have the confidence that the planning system will deliver timely decisions, so the government needs to act now. Waiting for a much fuller review in 2014 would be a lost opportunity.” – added Mr Bentley.
What is your reaction to the proposed measures by the CBI to improve major infrastructure planning systems? How would that help your business and boost economic growth? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment on Train4TradeSkills’ Facebook and Twitter pages:
Although the building construction sector remains one of the most stable industries in the UK, the CBI thinks greater investment is needed for infrastructure projects to encourage continual growth and business confidence.
The CBI has proposed a number of measures for the government as an opportunity to provide real boost for private sector investments in infrastructure schemes and give more support to small and medium businesses.
General Director at CBI, John Cridland, explained that the government should use Chancellor’s budget statement next month to deliver significant financial stimulus to make mortgages more affordable to the housing market.
Mr Cridland thinks future growth through reforms of the UK’s tax system is essential for businesses to invest in Britain. He is calling on the government to make some changes into the current system which will create new opportunities for growth.
Mr Cridland highlighted the significance of infrastructure investment as one of the most important priorities which the government needs to support in order to encourage industry’s growth and create permanent jobs.
He said: “Delivering private sector investment in infrastructure, supporting mid-sized businesses, hammering out the details on credit easing, extending the Youth Contract to 16 and 17-year-olds, and introducing the New Build Indemnity Scheme for mortgages at the earliest opportunity will all provide a real boost for UK growth and jobs.”
Do you agree with the CBI that the infrastructure industry is a key factor for economic growth and creating new jobs? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment below: