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MCR Developing As Global Economic Hub

But focus needs to pulled from the capital

Published on March 12th 2014.

MCR Developing As Global Economic Hub

THE FOLLOWING is a release from Manchester City Council, it declares that the city is poised to become a global economic hub, with business and people (particularly graduates), skills and talent pouring into the city, making it the UK's fastest growing population - estimates suggest there'll be an extra 80,000 people in Manchester by 2027.

But that while around £5,000 is spent on transport infrastructure per person in London, the figure in the rest of the country is closer to £700.

However, with the BBC's Mind The Gap programme highlighting the economic forces polarising Britain, that if there is to be a 'counterweight' to the economic dominance of London, Manchester has the greatest potential but that more needs to be done to rebalance London's share:

Manchester City Council release:

'Manchester leaders say the city region is already developing as a global economic hub, but still supports the contention in the BBC programme Mind the Gap that the UK’s economy needs to be rebalanced in relation to London.

Evan Davis’ programme, screened earlier this week, argued that the country’s economy was disproportionately weighted towards the capital, with London taking up too great a share of the UK’s population and talent.

The presenter argued that far more money being generated and spent in London than in the rest of the country, and if another city is to emerge which can act as a ‘counterweight’ to the capital, it would need to be a large hub which can attract talent and act as a driver for economic growth.

The Manchester Independent Economic Review (MIER) said that the city region, due to its size, skills base, talent pool and political and business structures was the city outside London with the greatest economic potential to grow into a global growth hub.

Since the report was published in 2009, the Greater Manchester Combined Authority has been created – enabling Manchester to work much more closely with other councils across the region.

And the last census, made in 2011, showed that Manchester was the fastest growing city in the UK with a 19 per cent increase in population.

The City Council expects this figure to grow by an extra 80,000 people by 2027, with tens of thousands of young people attracted by new jobs created in the city. A high proportion of the city's population are graduates and the local economy is strong enough for Manchester to have been a net importer of graduates for a number of years.

Sir Richard LeeseSir Richard Leese, Council leader - on the left

The city region, along with other members of the Core Cities group, is also set to benefit from a campaign launched by London mayor Boris Johnson to give greater financial freedom to major English cities.

The campaign aims to give authorities such as Manchester tighter control of tax revenues, including council tax, stamp duty, land tax and business rates – giving cities the freedom to invest in their own economies, enabling them to become more competitive and so create jobs, as well as to join up public services and plan for future needs.

Sir Richard Leese, leader of Manchester City Council, said: "I’d like to welcome a lot of the points made by Evan Davis in this programme, and hope it encourages debate about this important subject. We have recognised for many years that the Manchester city region has the potential to become a major global hub, creating jobs, attracting talent and generating growth.

"Authorities and other organisations within the city region have now been able to cooperate more closely, in order to unleash our economic potential, while our recent joint campaign with the Core Cities group, the Mayor of London and London Councils seeks to provide us with the powers and resources we need to accelerate growth and enable us to invest in transport and housing.

"The programme also made the point that transport plays a crucial role in helping hubs develop by connecting people with jobs – but that while around £5,000 is spent on transport infrastructure per person in London, the figure in the rest of the country is closer to £700. Adding to our own investment through the Greater Manchester Transport Fund, massive transport infrastructure plans such as the Northern Hub and HS2 are now providing us with a once in a lifetime opportunity to create essential catalysts for growth and deliver a step change in productivity for the UK economy."'

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19 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

DavidMarch 12th 2014.

If all northern Labour MP had been willing to stick together they could have forced a fairer distribution of transport spending to happen,by being prepared to vote as a block against the Blair/Brown government,unless they equalised transport spending.Unfortunately they are not,since most most of them in reality live in London and it's the state of the tube that most concerns them.All Labour will ever offer the north is increased council budgets and hence more state dependent jobs.That does not mean the other parties are a lot better,but at least they have the excuse of having few seats to bother about in the North.

2 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousMarch 12th 2014.

Local Labour MP any Burnham has already come out against HS2. Wonder if he voted for Crossrail - and "will vote" for Crossrail 2 though?

AnonymousMarch 12th 2014.

Andy Burnham, sorry.

ShybaldbuddhistMarch 12th 2014.

There's a number of things that stand out to me. London and the South East understand the benefits of strength in unity. You don't see people from Westminster shouting 'we're not from London we are from Westminster and we are a city too don't you know' All of Greater Manchester should all join forces and fight for what's best for the North West. All the nonsense we read about Manchester/Salford/Trafford it does no one no favours. If the Vatican City and the City Westminster see the benefits from being in Rome and London, then why can't we see the benefits? It weakens us as a City and a region. We don't seem to have anyone fighting our corner half as much as the London MP's fight theirs. The fact that more is spent in London on cycling than is spent on our entire public transport system is an absolute joke. Why is no one demanding an underground system for the North West? Are we not worthy of one?

4 Responses: Reply To This...
rinkydinkMarch 12th 2014.

Very well put! And I can't be doing with all these small - minded idiots on here that chirp up "Trafford is not in Manchester" or "I am Salford born and bred, I am not from Manchester." I mean who cares?! Yes Trafford is in Manchester and so is Salford. Who cares what the history books say? Most people consider them both to be Manchester. That's the only thing that does and should matter

Ghostly TomMarch 12th 2014.

This is spot on, we need local politicians who can see the bigger picture. No Chinese business is going to rush to invest in Salford, Ashton, Stockport....but they will invest in Manchester. Making Salford into Manchester, Borough of Salford and so on will bring benefits to Salford through its connection with the umbrella name. The City of Westminster does not suffer being a part of London.

AnonymousMarch 13th 2014.

Oh no, not the Manchester vs Salford thing again? Or Manchester vs Liverpool, Manchester vs Leeds and that really really annoying & nonsensical one - Manchester vs Birmingham as the 2nd city! Yes, we always end up with such silly divisive debate, whenever the power of London is questioned. And particular shame on the now Trinity Mirror owned MEN, for pitiably resorting to all this after the Evan Davis programme. No wonder London is laughing all the way to the bank. Divide & rule alright!

Mark FullerMarch 14th 2014.

Manchesters Victorian boundaries need an up-grade. Salford, Trafford and Tameside should officially become part of the city of Manchester.

DavidMarch 12th 2014.

It's not just the north that is being screwed it's the South west as well.How London is able to get away with this despite being just a small part of whole country,just shows how powerful the London lobby is.The Arts Council is another body in the pocket of the London lobby.

Poster BoyMarch 13th 2014.

There's nothing wrong with the City Council using the currency of the Evan Davis programme to reinforce the lobbying for a better deal for the North, promoted by Graham Stringer and his colleagues in Parliament. We will all be able to judge the efficacy, when/if a Labour is returned to govern nationally alongside it's local council colleagues. There was little change in the inequalities between North and South after 13 years of opportunity last time...

1 Response: Reply To This...
Ghostly TomMarch 14th 2014.

..so we won't be holding our breath?...

Eugene Spain)March 14th 2014.

Well said Rinkydink and Ghostly Tom,All this small mindedness about Stretford,Salford.Trafford etc. is a load of trossacks,there would be about 80 people in Stretford for example If it were not attached to Manchester.Why do they think they have the two Old Traffords there? It is because it is a part of Manchester.In view of the fact of Crossrail and the billions spent on the tube,We should have the tram all over the city and suburbs,we are an urban area of two and a half million people and like Jim O'neill says there should be billions spent on the railways in connecting all the major centres of population in a modern rail service for the North.We will not achieve real growth with little bits of spending like the Northern Hub.Can you imagine a mainline London station with the roof that Victoria Station had for 16 years!Wake up Manchester before it is too late London has trodden all over the UK for many many years.Maximum spending down there to the detriment of the rest of the country.Give Jim O'Neill the job of getting proper funding Off the Government to get the economy in the North,back on it's feet.This is after all the most One city country in the world.

Mark FullerMarch 14th 2014.

Boris Johnson has claimed that London is the capital of the world. Actually no. it's Manchester, obviously. Manchester is the birthplace of the modern world, the first industrial city and also where the computer was "born",ushering in the post industrial world. In the 19th century parliament should have been transferred to Manchester, and Manchester declared the new capital and first city of the empire."What Manchester does today, the world does tomorrow ", declared the reforming Tory Disraeli. And it is this great entrepreneurial and inventive spirit that will lead Manchester back to being a major player on the world stage again.Of course, central government can if it so chooses ,facilitate this re-emergence.The last regime were often obstructive or indifferent toward Manchesters' infra-structural needs, but things are moving along nicely now. The Northern Hub is a game changer , the biggest investment in the north's rail network since the Victorian age.with Manchester as the chief beneficiary. This gargantuan project will be completed by late 2019;by which time an additional 700 train a day will be speeding across the north on up-graded or newly electrified lines.As a consequence, all the great northern cities, but especially Manchester,will be in a stronger position to attract investment and once again challenge the hegemony of London.

3 Responses: Reply To This...
GimboidMarch 15th 2014.

Manchester is the capital of.... the north-west of England, MAYBE. The suggestion of anything else suggests nothing more than a startling disconnection from reality.

AnonymousMarch 15th 2014.

Your certainly a man who knows about being disconnected from reality Gimboid.

GimboidMarch 15th 2014.

Meaning, Anon?

Mark FullerMarch 15th 2014.

I probably am a little unhinged-aren't we all? Obviously, Manchester isn't the capital of the world:could any city seriously make that claim? You even question whether Manchester is the capital of the north west. Perhaps you have Liverpool in mind. If so , it would interesting to read your views.

1 Response: Reply To This...
GimboidMarch 17th 2014.

Hi Mark, thanks for your reply to my slightly brusque comment! It's not so much that I think any other city has a better claim to be capital of the north, more that Manchester's claim to even that status is not unequivocal - never mind capital of England. Cheers

MGSMarch 17th 2014.

time for a new political party? The Northern Party? Maybe not led by Bez? www.bbc.co.uk/…/uk-england-manchester-26601873…

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