Today (31st March), the UK’s 39 Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) will submit their Strategic Economic Plans to Government. NEP will put forward their most ambitious economic plan to date which will further cement Northamptonshire’s position at the forefront of the UK’s economic recovery. NEP’s strategy will target growth at 1% higher than the national average increasing our current economy from £16billion to £20billion by 2021.
Government invited all LEPs in England to submit plans detailing how they will support their local economies to grow and how Government investment could best be used to deliver this.
NEP’s plan is the result of extensive collaboration with a wide range of local partners from the private, public and voluntary and community sectors. It focuses on four key areas business and innovation, employment and skills, infrastructure and connectivity and housing, which will help Northamptonshire’s economy to grow further faster. By 2021, NEP plans to build 37,000 new homes and stimulate a £4billion boost in the local economy which will create over 32,000 new jobs for local people.
Jo Lappin, Chief Executive, NEP said: “More than 180 people from businesses and key organisations across Northamptonshire shared their thoughts with us, which informed and shaped our Strategic Economic Plan. We are confident that this Plan will help our businesses to grow and prosper and create new jobs for Northamptonshire. It will also support house building and create the infrastructure that we need for our growing population.”
Greg Clark, Minister for Cities, said: "The Government welcomes the Strategic Economic Plan that Northamptonshire Enterprise Partnership has published today and looks forward to continued engagement with local civic and business leaders over the next few months on the negotiation of their Growth Deal.
“The Growth Deal provides a fantastic opportunity for NEP to seek freedoms, flexibilities and influence over resources from government, and a share of the Local Growth Fund to put towards their the growth priorities set out in this Strategic Economic Plan. This provides the opportunity to unleash the ambition and creativity of Northamptonshire's local leaders, by devolving resource and responsibility in return for compelling local economic leadership in pursuit of growth."
Business and innovation
Northampton was named the best city for business in the UK by Experian in March 2014. NEP will continue to offer wide-ranging and effective support to help businesses grow and develop including Northamptonshire’s thriving sectors which include High Performance Technologies, Logistics, Food and Drink, Financial Services and the Creative Industries.
Employment and skills
NEP’s plan recognises the importance of providing a skilled workforce that meets the current and future needs of our businesses. The plan will support those looking for work to develop the skills that employers need. It will also support our businesses to take on apprentices and young people.
Northamptonshire is already leading the way in the country for housing development. Prior’s Hall near Corby is the biggest building site in the UK with five home developers currently active on the site. NEP is aiming to stimulate the building of a further 37,000 homes across Northamptonshire by 2021. The Plan will bring together key partners to explore how Northamptonshire can provide the housing needed to meet the needs of local people –the right product, in the right place, at the right price.
Infrastructure and connectivity
Northamptonshire’s central location makes it one of the most accessible areas in the country. It is the UK’s leading logistics and transport hub and one of the fastest developing places in the country. NEP is aiming to strengthen this competitive advantage further by further investment in the transport infrastructure. There will also be significant investment in the county’s digital infrastructure so that Northamptonshire businesses have access to first class IT networks, which allow them to compete on a global basis.
The full Strategic Economic Plan (SEP) will be submitted to Government today.
To download the Northamptonshire SEP CLICK HERE
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