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Infrastructure Alliance calls for action

The Government must take immediate action to upgrade the UK’s infrastructure, a new report urges.

The Infrastructure Alliance has published a report, ‘Avoiding the infrastructure crunch: getting Britain working’, which calls for “shovel-ready” maintenance and minor works to begin straight away.

The report also recommends an analysis of the future demand for skills, to ensure the UK has the necessary workforce available to deliver projects in the long term.

Investment must be rebalanced throughout the UK to rebuild activity in communities and support a more even economic recovery and develop a greater consensus of the country’s infrastructure needs, detailing how they can best be paid for and delivered.

Lord O'Neill, chairman of the Strategic Forum for Construction said: “Too often the choices politicians make about where to invest, simply isn’t informed by a strategic view of the long-term demands on Britain’s infrastructure.”

ICE director general Nick Baveystock said: “Infrastructure has a pivotal part to play in enabling our economic recovery – not only does it drive jobs and growth but it builds the skills we need to compete internationally.

“Greater political consensus is imperative, not only on the programme of works in the National Infrastructure Plan but on finance and delivery mechanisms, allowing government to drive down risk and make infrastructure an attractive investment - providing industry and investors greater certainty against which to plan.”

Tell us what you think – have your say below, or email us directly at [email protected]


Edward Harkins   03/10/2012 at 13:04

Undeniably the UK needs higher investment in infrastructure and undeniably investment in infrastructure offers the potential of long term enhanced economic performance in national economies. It should not, however, be promoted as a recession recovery play - there's no reputable, robust and widely accepted evidence from modern economic history that increased infrastructure expenditure has worked effectively as a significant tool for such recovery.

Ged Parker   04/10/2012 at 13:34

What Edward says is correct, though there is a case for accelerating infrastructure spend during a downturn when various rates are low and there is spare capacity. The issue then becomes where? Our 'shovel ready' schemes tend to be in the south. (Can we ban 'shovel ready'- seems to a request for public money for what would have happened anyway!

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