Daniel Zeichner, MP for Cambridge, says that the warning in the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Independent Economic Review (CPIER) that employment growth could go into reverse after 2031, with businesses shrinking and moving away, must be taken seriously.
The significant analysis undertaken by the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Independent Economic Commission (CPIEC) has identified a number of recommendations for the Combined Authority (CA) to ensure productivity improves in the coming years, as well as pinpointing the significant of the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough area for the wider UK economy.
Challenges that have been acknowledged by the report include; the need for increased housing to alleviate soaring house prices; better transport and infrastructure projects for Greater Cambridge; a future skills deficit that risks employment growth slowing and eventually reversing; and the need to address inequality due to the overall negative impact on economic output for the region. The review has also highlighted Brexit and the current uncertainty around the end deal as a risk to the region.
Mr Zeichner said: “This is a serious and weighty report produced by a group of highly-respected independent economists and thinkers from across the political spectrum . I very much welcome the key findings as they highlight serious concerns about the future economic success of Cambridge and the wider region, concerns that I have voiced for some time. The recommendations are clear; future prosperity is not guaranteed and if action is not taken soon on transport, housing, infrastructure and skills then there will be adverse effects for Cambridge, the wider region and ultimately the UK. They rightly highlight the need to spread wealth more fairly, and to protect all that makes Cambridge so special – growth isn’t just about more, it is about doing things better and improving the quality of life for everyone.”
“There are some very stark warnings in this report. The concern that employment growth could slow by 2021 and reverse by 2031 as a result of businesses moving away from the area is serious. A skilled workforce has very much been the driving factor in Cambridge’s success and with uncertainty around our future relationship with the EU, failure to make the right investment in skills and infrastructure could lead tointernationally focused businesses looking elsewhere.”
The Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Economic Review Commission (CPERC) was established by the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority in June 2017 to deliver an independent assessment of the economy and future growth prospects of the area covered by the CA. The analysis will be used by the relevant authorities in order to make strategic and effective investment decisions in the coming years that will harness the continued growth of the region.