Peter Richardson, Chairman of D2N2 LEP
Tough decisions are being made and tight deadlines met as D2N2 takes another major step forward in regards to driving economic growth.
Today, all 39 Local Enterprise Partnerships must submit the first draft of their Strategic Economic Plan to Government. From tomorrow (Friday December 20), it can be downloaded from our website.
By March 31 2014, following more consultation and feedback from Whitehall, the final submission will be made and by the summer, we will complete our Growth Deal – the amount of funding devolved from central government to the LEP to deliver our ambitious plan for Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire.
A total of £2billion a year, for five years, has been made available through the Single Local Growth Fund but it is a competitive process involving all 39 LEPs nationwide. With £10billion available in total over five years, it is vital D2N2 gets more than its fair share and is at the front of the queue.
That is why we must make our Strategic Economic Plan a true standout document, with maximum input from the private sector and supported by public sector, HE and FE and the voluntary and community sector. From manufacturing to the visitor economy, we must bring out what is distinctive about D2N2, demonstrate our competitive advantage and showcase exactly why this is the UK’s most inspirational postcode.
Our plan for growth outlines our key strategic priorities and six key sectors and it is up to us to demonstrate what makes us so creative and innovative and there is a very strong need for clear business leadership to come through in our submission.
We have a clear determination to produce sustainable jobs and a sustainable countryside and working with our Local Nature Partnerships has to be a win/win situation. Accelerating delivery of superfast broadband across the whole patch, from the cities to the most rural of areas is a key objective.
Skills is a huge priority and runs through our future plans and the clear leadership and involvement of our Universities, Colleges and private sector providers will ensure that employers and employment opportunities are at the forefront of our plans and can be the start of the end to our skills shortages.
We have to make it count, help the East Midlands punch above its history and weight and we certainly won’t be settling for just our ‘fair share’ of the Single Pot which will run alongside our allocation of 250 million euros of EU Funding from 2014 to 2020, to help deliver on our promises.
That is why, over the next few weeks and months, this plan will be developed further with maximum input from the private and public sector. I assure you, no stone will be left unturned.
We here at D2N2 are passionate and driven. We have to make sure our Strategic Economic Plan is innovative and inspirational – and demonstrate exactly why D2N2 is the UK’s Most Inspirational Postcode.