EAST OF ENGLAND MPs CALLED FOR “LEVELLING UP” SUPPORT FROM NEW CHANCELLOR

Co-chairs of the East of England All Party Parliamentary Group, MPs Peter Aldous and Daniel Zeichner, have written to the new Chancellor Rishi Sunak MP calling for the East of England to not be overlooked in his first budget which is widely expected to focus on ‘levelling up’ and the north.

EAST OF ENGLAND MPs CALLED FOR “LEVELLING UP” SUPPORT FROM NEW CHANCELLOR

Co-chairs of the East of England All Party Parliamentary Group, MPs Peter Aldous and Daniel Zeichner,  wrote to the new Chancellor Rishi Sunak MP calling for the East of England to not be overlooked in his first budget which was widely expected to focus on ‘levelling up’ and the north.

Their letter highlighted coastal communities, including Clacton-on-Sea (where Jaywick is the most deprived neighbourhood of all 32,844 in England), Colchester, Felixstowe, Great Yarmouth, Ipswich, Lowestoft and Kings Lynn which urgently need regeneration and Government support. Co-chair Peter Aldous MP said they

“require levelling up support every bit as ‘left behind’ towns in the north and midlands.”

The official Budget representation from the APPG also makes the case that lack of quality transport and digital connectivity is frustrating the potential of the region. Co-chair Daniel Zeichner MP said the new Chancellor should:

“Invest in urgent transport schemes including much needed improvements to the A14, A47, A120 and the West Anglian Mainline. Raising transport investment per head of population to the England average is crucial and overdue.”

The letter also emphasised what it says is an emerging positive vision for the East of England, which is:

  • as a network of dynamic high growth corridors, linking key regional clusters and institutions, connecting Cambridge with significant coastal assets and global gateways to the east and CaMkOx to the west as well as via the innovation corridor running through Stansted Airport to the London commuter belt in the south
  • as a global leader in R&D investment, with more people employed in scientific research and development than any other UK region; the East of England has excellent prospects in the increasingly important sectors such as high tech, agri food, bioscience and AI and data
  • as a frontrunner in contributing to meeting the UK’s net zero carbon target through its potential for innovation and solutions for renewables including off shore wind and nuclear power generation as well as clean growth technology; innovation here will assist the UK’s endeavours towards net zero

It also highlighted “growing concerns about whether the region can generate and retain – through its education, skills and apprenticeship offer and provision – the required skills, including for STEM related as well as lower skilled employment, that will be needed to support ambitious plans for economic growth post Brexit.”

It also called for “greater funding for local government so councils can become genuine place makers and shapers again, for example building – or commissioning – affordable homes and working with businesses to facilitate economic growth and where appropriate help drive forward coastal town regeneration.”

The joint letter from MPs Peter Aldous and Daniel Zeichner ends by saying:

“As one of the fastest growing UK regions and a net contributor to the Exchequer, investing in the East of England allows the UK to prosper more and generates extra revenue for the Government, which can then be spent on its priorities including levelling up. However, to realise its potential the East of England still requires some specific Government support – for example on transport, skills, local government and on coastal communities – and we trust that you will consider our requests fully and favourably.”

THE LETTER IS AVAILABLE HERE

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