‘Joining the dots’ between regional actions and national priorities
Charles Roach, Chief Executive, UK Business Council for Sustainable Development
With the national programmes for infrastructure and growth making more accountable the role of regional government in increasing the pace of delivery, together with devolved capital programmes and the freeing up of the regulatory framework, the transition towards a sustainable Britain will be challenging.
UKBCSD welcomes the Government’s focus on this area of high-tech business activity, leveraging its economic potential to sustain growth from public and private investment. National Government is focusing on the Oxford-Milton Keynes-Cambridge Growth Corridor to improve housing and transport infrastructure, because it has rightly been identified as an economic area of global significance. Alongside the housing growth and infrastructure programmes, we believe this huge area should be seen as a significant component of an Industrial Strategy which “joins the dots” between these regional actions and our national priorities.
The contribution of sustainable development in the rebuilding of our regions, towns and cities beyond London, has the potential to provide opportunities way beyond provision of physical infrastructure. Sustainable solutions and Innovation practice within this high-tech corridor offers the key to unlocking the productive capacity needed, if we are to deliver more permanent employment, more climate resilient development and greater levels of long term investment across our commercial supply chains.
We would encourage the local partners’ strategy to develop, alongside the various arms of Government, a sustainable development charter. This must capture how the benefits of contributing more, higher value jobs, longer term business certainty and investment can be enabled through sector innovation, alongside sustainable solutions.
The prize of delivering sustainable development should not be lost in these once-in-a-generation plans for the Central Area.