Local Enterprise Partnerships in the North of England will form an influential new body to support the government’s ambitions for the Northern Powerhouse across the region, Northern Powerhouse Minister Jake Berry MP announced today (6 July 2018).
The Chairs of each of the 11 Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) will sit on a newly formed, government-funded board called the ‘NP11’.
The board will act as one voice representing each of their regions as a modern day ‘Council for the North’ to work with and advise the government on issues such as how to increase productivity, overcome regional disparities in economic growth and tackle the historic north-south divide.
While speaking at the first ever Northern Powerhouse Business Summit in Newcastle Gateshead, Northern Powerhouse Minister Jake Berry MP said: “As we approach leaving the European Union we need to ensure that every area of the UK continues to economically flourish.
“The Northern Powerhouse will be a vital support to the UK in achieving this and so I am very pleased the 11 LEP Chairs have agreed to form the new NP11 board.
“For the first time since 1472, we will bring together the business voices of the Northern Powerhouse in our Council for the North. They have one task: to enrich all the peoples of the North of England – this is the foundation stone of the Northern Powerhouse and, with the skills and expertise of the NP11, we will shift the North’s economy into overdrive.
“Together we will deliver a North of England which is an economic powerhouse and one which can proudly take its place on the world stage both now and as we leave the EU.”
The 3 day summit brought together leading figures from across government and industry including Business Secretary Greg Clark and the Governor of the Bank of England Mark Carney. Both indicated their support for the ambitions of the Northern Powerhouse as they talked about securing a Brexit that supports northern businesses and how innovative small firms in areas like the north east could provide the key to a growing and fairer global economy.
The 3 day summit is part of the Great Exhibition of the North and is the first event of its kind ever to be held by government. The summit was held on the site of where 19th century engineer Robert Stephenson designed the world’s first locomotive – the Rocket – during the Industrial Revolution.