The Confederation of British Industry (CBI) has released its Driving Delivery: turning plans into action on regional infrastructure report, which highlights the issues around complexity of infrastructure decision making.
Compiled by a series of discussions with a range of businesses and transport organisations throughout England, Driving Delivery identifies the sector’s concerns surrounding both the complex decision making process within infrastructure, and the lack of transparency about how investments are being made.
Stakeholders in the transport and infrastructure industries are, according to the Confederation’s report, concerned that these problems are putting the promise of greater connectivity at risk in the different regions of the country.
As a result, a series of recommendations have been set out by the CBI – the voice for approximately 190,000 businesses in the UK.
In the Driving Delivery report summary, the CBI say that the differing speed of devolution is a reason why sensible strategy is needed.
“The government is increasingly looking to regions to make their case for transport investment, reflecting the fact that those closest to the outcomes of decisions are often better placed to make them.
“However, with the gap widening between those regions where devolution and collaboration on infrastructure is occurring, and those where it is not, it is important to avoid a scenario of a two-speed England where infrastructure investment and delivery gets left behind in some regions.”
Following discussions with businesses in different regions, the five recommendations were made.
These called for a joined up approach to infrastructure at a national and regional level; reflect the economic benefits of transport investment in central government decision making; strengthen the role of sub-national transport bodies in strategic decision making; create a level playing field to deliver transport improvements across all regions; and ensure sustainable, consolidated and long term funding for local transport.
The CBI has always welcomed infrastructure schemes that improve local areas, business opportunities and their economies; these recommendations are key to success in regions.