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PM Reveals Economic Recovery Plans

PM Reveals Economic Recovery Plans
30th June 2020
 

Boris Johnson has revealed the government's plans for a post-COVID economic recovery, stressing that it will build the foundations now for "future prosperity."

The Prime Minister, in a speech from Dudley today (30 June 2020), promised the most radical reform of planning since the Second World War to speed up housebuilding. 

The £5bn plan is being dubbed the "New Deal", a reference to Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal programme which was designed to help America recover from the economic depression in the 1930s. 

 

What was Announced?

 

  • Johnson reiterated his manifesto promise for 20,000 more police officers
  • 30,000 hectares of trees will be planted. That's 75,000 acres of trees every year by 2025
  • A £1bn schools-building project
  • A promise to build "fantastic new homes on brownfield sites and other areas with better transport"
  • A call to "address that inter-generational injustice" by helping young people "get on the housing ladder the way their parents and grandparents could"
  •  An "opportunity guarantee" so that every young person has the chance of an apprenticeship or an in-work placement
  • As part of the UK's mission to reach net-zero CO2 emissions by 2050, Johnson said we should set ourselves "the goal of producing the world’s first net-zero long haul passenger plane, jet zero"

 

Industry Reaction

 

"The fact that the Prime Minister sees work placements as a key part of a new opportunity guarantee for young people is an important step forward..."

–Mark Dawe

CEO, Association of Employment and Learning Providers

Polly Billington, Director of UK100, a network for UK local authorities focused on climate and clean energy policy commented: “The Prime Minister needs to make good on his manifesto promise to invest in energy efficiency in UK homes, which are some of the leakiest in Europe.

"£5bn could unlock £100bn. That would help consumers save on their fuel bills and the environment. A stimulus package that focuses on local energy will help rescue the UK economy and deliver on the Prime Minister’s ambitions of levelling up all parts of the country, and meeting the Net Zero target.”

Association of Employment and Learning Providers CEO Mark Dawe said: "The fact that the Prime Minister sees work placements as a key part of a new opportunity guarantee for young people is an important step forward and we recently submitted at the government’s request what has been holding back the highly effective traineeship programme from taking off.  We believe incentives for SME employers will be needed.

"On apprenticeships, we don’t believe that the floated £3k employer incentive is going to cut it. To meet a 50% wage subsidy, the subsidy for a young apprentice in their first year should be around £4k and up to £7.5k in the second year depending on their age."

 

“On the face of it, the PM's announcement is extremely encouraging.  A building boom is exactly what the construction sector and the economy needs after being decimated by the COVID-19 crisis. 

–Clive Docwra

Managing Director, McBains 

Clive Docwra, Managing Director of property and construction consultancy McBains, said:

“On the face of it, the PM's announcement is extremely encouraging.  A building boom is exactly what the construction sector and the economy needs after being decimated by the COVID-19 crisis. 

"Construction output levels are at historic lows, initially suffering from productivity challenges brought about through lockdown and social distancing measures, and potentially in the future medium to longer-term by uncertainty and recessionary pressures. For example, private new housing work is at its lowest level for a decade and last month saw a record fall in private commercial work - so public sector projects will be of huge importance in order for the sector to get back on its feet again.

“Measures like streamlined planning, greater flexibility associated with PDR rights, extensions to the 'Help to Buy' scheme and new mechanisms to encourage private sector investment in public sector initiatives, will be warmly welcomed. 

"But there’s still much more to do to increase construction activity and housebuilding rates to the levels needed to meet the shortage of homes. Ultimately, clarity of pipeline and early commitments to policy changes will enable businesses to plan and invest, and thus support employment and economic growth.

“Plus, if we are to really experience an infrastructure and construction boom that truly levels up, we need to see construction firms from all corners of the UK, and of all shapes and sizes, not just the multinationals, be a part of these plans.”

 

Where is the Green in Boris’ New Deal?

 

Steve Malkin, CEO of Planet First and experienced sustainability consultant provides his reaction to the “New Deal” announcement.

 

READ INDUSTRY EXPERT OPINION HERE

 

Picture: A photograph of Boris Johnson, making his speech at Dudley today, on a lecture which reads "Build, Build, Build". Image Credit: The Telegraph

Article written by Ella Tansley – published 30th June 2020

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