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ICE meeting told that chancellor will launch infrastructure plan next month

Chancellor George Osborne is to make a key announcement in the Autumn Review regarding the National Infrastructure Plan (NIP), a key Conservative MP said last week.

Chancellor George Osborne is to make a key announcement in the Autumn Review regarding the National Infrastructure Plan (NIP), a key Conservative MP said last week.

The Autumn Review of the state of the economy is expected to be published on 29 November.
Wirral West MP Esther McVey told an ICE organised fringe meeting at the Conservative Party that the NIP announcement was likely to be contained in the review.

Private sector funding

Osborne is expected to say that the government will seek private sector funding for 30% of project costs.

McVey said infrastructure is “the skeleton that goes right through our country. Business [grows] off that skeleton.”

She defended the coalition’s Localism Bill, which will make major changes to the planning of infrastructure projects.

“I want to reassure you that there are MPs that get it [the need for infrastructure spending]. I think if you look at the things this government are doing, we’re saying ‘yes, it’s about localism, but we also know we need to get this country [as a whole] up and running.’”

Lessons from the past

Speaking to NCE at the event, McVey said that government and engineers should look to Liverpool’s 19th century industrial heritage to create a successful relationship between infrastructure and business.

“We were dynamic then, and understood how important the industry was. The railways and the docks were key jobs.

“Boosting infrastructure investment is fundamentally about employment and bringing knowledge back into the country.”

McVey’s family owns Liverpool contractor, JG McVey, and she is campaigning for Liverpool to become the home for the Green Investment Bank.

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