A total of £5bn of private sector leverage has been secured by Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) to date as part of a list of headline figures announced today (22 March) at the LEP Annual Conference.
The level of private investment is part of a set of accumulated data collected by the LEP Network from the 39 business-led partnerships in England to demonstrate the impact of the work of LEPs and show that, to date, LEPs have:
• Created 115,000 new jobs
• Trained 78,000 learners
• Created 71,000 new businesses
• Supported 72,000 businesses
• Built 16,000 new homes, and
• Spent £945m on infrastructure
Welcoming the start of the LEP Annual Conference, the Prime Minister, The Rt Hon David Cameron MP said:
""In the five years since I joined you for the first LEP conference in Coventry, I have been delighted to see the real impact Local Enterprise Partnerships are making across the country. Together you have invested over £15 billion in projects and programmes - boosting local economies and creating quality job opportunities that are improving people’s lives and their communities.
"I believe that local business leaders and local authorities must work together to make the best decisions for their area. This Government is pushing forward with the most ambitious devolution of power in a generation and business must be at the forefront of this. Now is the time for Local Enterprise Partnerships to get involved in devolution deals and tell us what you can do to drive growth.
"The achievements of LEPs are to be commended, but there is more to be done. So let me wish you a productive and enjoyable conference, and I look forward to seeing and hearing about what you come up with.”
Opening the LEP Annual Conference, James Wharton MP, Minister for Local Growth and the Northern Powerhouse said:
"These partnerships have had a significant and visible impact on their local economies helping deliver jobs and growth for the UK. Their business-led approach has seen billions invested by the private sector and thousands of jobs generated for local people.”
The data gathered from England’s 39 LEPs reveals some of the biggest economic growth projects underway in the country that is helping local economies and businesses to develop and grow, they include:
I. A growth programme worth nearly £1 billion developed by Lancashire Enterprise Partnership, including the £454 million Preston, South Ribble and Lancashire City Deal, which will transform the area's infrastructure, and the Lancashire Growth Deal which will see work continue on 30 major projects funded through £250m plus of government funding.
II. Over £1bn government investment secured by Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership, through their City Deal, Growth Deal and other funding streams. Through the Business Growth Programme and Growing Places Fund, the LEP has provided investment that’s helped 350 small businesses to grow, creating a projected 3,500 jobs for local people. In total, the LEP has provided support to over 3,000 businesses.
III. Liverpool City Region LEP securing over £1bn investment for the City Region through the Local Growth Fund, focused around major infrastructure investment. It has to date allocated over £15m to Skills Capital projects in colleges and other institutions which will support over 4,800 new learners.
IV. Sheffield City Region LEP securing a £325 million Growth Deal to start to deliver its vision for 70,000 jobs and 6,000 businesses. Through the deal, the City Region is delivering a programme of fifteen key schemes that will unlock over £5 billion of investment, 12,000 jobs, 3.1 million square metres of new work space and 14,000 new homes
V. Tees Valley Unlimited (TVU) working with companies to secure over £1.35bn of private sector inward investment, including attracting the American company Air Products who invested over £600m on TVU’s Enterprise Zone. TVU has also secured substantial investment from the Regional Growth Fund and the Local Growth Fund to generate a further £1bn of private sector investment creating more than 3,000 new jobs.
VI. A ‘national exemplar’ from Dorset LEP’s Growth Hub, a business support initiative. Between April 2014 and March 2015 it saw 7,090 businesses engaged, resulting in 36 successful grant fund applications to create 190 new jobs across Dorset. Total value of contracts approved equals £5,467,113. Dorset LEP has allocated a further £250,000 of Growth Deal funding towards the Growth Hub to continue the support of its success.
VII. Greater Birmingham & Solihull’s Institute of Translational Medicine (ITM), opening at the end of June 2015. Led by Birmingham Health Partners, and supported by £12.5m from the GBSLEP’s City Deal, the ITM will bring together clinicians, academics and IT to support clinical trials, and is expected to generate 600 new jobs in the first five years.
Welcoming delegates to the LEP Annual Conference, Ursula Lidbetter MBE, Chair of the Greater Lincolnshire LEP and CEO of the Lincolnshire Co-operative, said:
"The expanding role of LEPs has had a transformational influence on the local economic landscape: forging devolution deals, implementing growth deals underpinned with £5bn of private sector leverage, creating new Enterprise Zones, influencing the European funding programmes, and taking a lead on local education and skills policy.
"The figures to date show that they have evolved into an effective private public sector partnership with a unique USP; they are business-led partnerships with commercial business acumen, strong strategic leadership and an acute insight into the needs of local business. They have proven their worth by driving sustainable private sector-led growth and job creation and they will be pivotal in the next four years to ensure the UK economy remains robust. "