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EU funds boost UK infrastructure

BRITISH INFRASTRUCTURE projects look set for a boost after the Chancellor promised to unlock an extra £600M of European Union funding over the next three years.

The announcement will see the Government provide matching funds to extract £600M of investment from the EU's £4.2bn structural fund.

The money will be poured into Objective 1 projects, which cover areas with a GDP less than 75% of the EU average. It is thought that the new money could provide a cash boost for projects in Wales, Cornwall, Merseyside and South Yorkshire.

Civil Engineering Contractors Assocation economist Jim Turner said: 'The example of Ireland where much EU funding has been poured into road building schemes, shows that these funds can deliver increased infrastructure investment. The Government has been unwilling to underwrite these sources of EU funding in the past.'

He added: 'In Wales, for example, there is a now a long queue of much needed road schemes that would qualify for this extra funding.'

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