Leader Views


Posted on:
14th December, 2018

How the North East Local Industrial Strategy will focus on better productivity and living standards

It's one year since the government published its modern Industrial Strategy. As part of that first anniversary, Andrew Hodgson, Chair of the North East LEP, explains how their Local Industrial Strategy will have a razor sharp focus on increasing the regions productivity and living standards.

How the North East Local Industrial Strategy will focus on better productivity and living standards

"It’s been a year since the Government published its Industrial Strategy, which aims to drive productivity, growth and innovation across the UK, and in July we welcomed the news that the North East has been selected as one of nine areas to be the first wave to develop a Local Industrial Strategy (LIS) next year.

Since the announcement, the team here at the North East LEP has been working with Government and our two Combined Authorities to begin the process of producing this Local Industrial Strategy for the North East.

Through the LIS, our aim will be to work with key partners in the business, education and public and community to sectors to identify how the region can make the most of our particular strengths to maximise productivity and improve standards of living for people here in the North East, and how the region will make an important contribution to the overall UK Industrial Strategy.

We know the North East has a strong contribution to make and the work we’re now doing on the Local Industrial Strategy dovetails with our North East Strategic Economic Plan (SEP) and our aim to create more and better jobs here in the North East. The SEP has been in place since 2014 and we are making significant progress towards achieving its targets, with 62,500 new jobs added to the regional economy between 2014 and June 2018. The introduction of the North East’s Local Industrial Strategy will build on the SEP.. 

The North East Local Industrial Strategy will have  a sharp focus on how we can improve productivity and living standards in the region and an outward focus on how we can maximise our contribution to the UK Industrial strategy by strengthening partnerships locally and nationally, and ensuring greater cross-boundary co-operation with other areas. In it we will identify themes, assets and projects we have in the region which will help to boost our productivity and contribute to UK growth. We will take forward some of the challenges we have already identified in the SEP around productivity and the need to build on the quality of employment in the region. The SEP will remain as our underpinning economic strategy for the region setting out our shared agenda across the region to drive More and Better jobs 

So what are the next steps in developing our Local Industrial Strategy? A key piece of work is the Productivity Review of the North East which has been commissioned from leading consultants Cambridge Econometrics and Steer Economic Development to  inform the Local Industrial Strategy development. Work to build an evidence base for this review is underway. And early in the New Year we will begin engagement activity, working closely with partners to make sure that we work in alignment to realise the potential of our economy in this time of political change.

The creation of the North East Local Industrial Strategy is very much a collaborative process and it allows us to work closely with colleagues in Government and here in the North East to make the most of our strengths as a region, to make sure we are securing future investment in the region and to tackle any challenges we face when it comes to increasing our productivity, growth and innovation."

For more information, please contact info@nelep.co.uk

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