New commission to advise government on infrastructure is set to open a Leeds office
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Mr Sunak described the announcement as “fantastic”, saying it would help distribute investment and create jobs across the country.
The National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) provides impartial, expert advice to government on major long-term economic infrastructure challenges. It will have a new site in Leeds by the end of 2023 while also retaining a presence in London.
The move means the NIC will join the UK Infrastructure Bank which opened its headquarters in Leeds in June. The Bank is tasked with accelerating investment into infrastructure projects, cutting emissions and levelling up every part of the UK.
Mr Sunak said: “We are committed to delivering high-quality infrastructure across all regions of the UK – and the National Infrastructure Commission plays an invaluable role in this. That is why it’s fantastic to announce that the National Infrastructure Commission will be opening a new office in Leeds. This will help distribute investment and opportunity right across the country as we level up opportunities, boost the economy and help create jobs.”
Ms Reeves said: “Leeds is a brilliant city and Labour will always welcome investment in our people and our potential.
“But given his record on levelling up, I fear this is just more talk and no action from a Chancellor who scrapped HS2 and Northern Powerhouse Rail despite a decade of promises from his government.
“He is trapping us in a high tax low growth cycle – we need to see less showmanship and more spades in the ground if we are to even start believing the Conservative rhetoric on levelling up for Yorkshire and the North.”
A Treasury spokesperson said the Government had committed over £130bn to economic infrastructure, including £5.7bn over five years to eight city regions in order to boost urban transport connectivity, since publishing its National Infrastructure Strategy last year.
Sir John Armitt, Chair of the National Infrastructure Commission, said: “It’s great to be establishing a second base in Leeds.”
He said “the move underlines the Commission’s role in advising government on the role infrastructure can play in boosting local economies and improving quality of life right across the UK”.
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