Reacting to the Government’s one year spending review today, Mark Simmonds, Head of Policy at the British Ports Association said:
On Infrastructure Spending
We are pleased that the Chancellor continues to prioritise investment in infrastructure, even in the most difficult times for public finances. Ministers recognise that world-class infrastructure delivers jobs and prosperity across the whole of the UK even in challenging times. We welcome spending on roads and connectivity and the recognition that this should be done in a holistic way. We recognise the importance of community and political support for projects but it is also important that investment will be made strategically and on the merit of projects’ ability to deliver prosperity and improve the UK’s competitiveness.
The publication of the National Infrastructure Strategy and confirmation of the opening of a new UK Investment Bank is also positive news and we look forward to more details on that as well as the new Shared Prosperity Fund. Wider continued spending on infrastructure is good news for port tonnages and will be a welcome sight for for ports in the face of worrying economic forecasts.
On Green Investment
The maritime industry faces an unprecedented challenge in meeting the Government’s net zero targets and we will need Ministers to be as ambitious with ports and shipping in unlocking investment as they are for road transport and community funding. Following on from the Prime Minister’s inclusion of maritime in the Government’s green industrial revolution, it’s now time Ministers agree a transformational package for maritime that will support emissions reductions across the whole sector and unlock private investment for emissions reduction.
The one year spending review sets the Budget’s for UK Government departments. Usually a 3-5 year exercise, this year’s review was only for one year in reaction to extraordinary impacts and constraints imposed by the pandemic.
The Government also published its delayed National Infrastructure Strategy.
Sea News Feature, November 26