£1bn Regional Growth Boost Announced

The UK's £1 billion boost to the Regional Growth Fund announced in the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement last week is expected to enable the fund to support around half a million jobs in total.

Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg will visit the North West today where he will set out further details on the boost to fund, which will now be £2.4billion in total. He will announce that there will be at least two further rounds of bidding, with the next round opening during February 2012.

He will also confirm the focus of the fund will remain on creating jobs, encouraging private investment and supporting areas dependent on the public sector and that cities will be encouraged as part of future bidding rounds to come forward with innovative programmes and packages of projects, building upon successful approaches adopted in previous rounds.

Nick Clegg said: "This additional billion pound boost for British businesses means the Regional Growth Fund will create an estimated half a million jobs before the end of this parliament.

"With this targeted support for companies we're unlocking private sector investment, with at least £5 put in for every £1 of public money.

"The first pots of Regional Growth Funding money are already jump starting growth and creating jobs across the country - helping to rebalance our economy so that every region and sector benefits."

Business Secretary Vince Cable said: "This fund is helping businesses across the country to create jobs – giving them the support they need to turn new ideas into actions that will drive their growth and future success.

"The Regional Growth Fund is already having an impact, with more than 50 per cent of the projects from the first round already up and running. The extra £1 billion we are investing will enable us to build on this success and deliver a shot in the arm to local economies."


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