Derelict buildings

MHCLG changes name to focus on levelling up

The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) has become the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities as the government emphasises its central mission to level up every part of the UK.

The change comes as former Bank of England Chief Economist, Andy Haldane, was appointed as the new Head of the Levelling Up Taskforce, which has been jointly established by the Prime Minister and the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Michael Gove.

According to the government, the Secretary of State will drive cross-Whitehall efforts to deliver a programme of tangible improvements in every part of the UK, as the country builds back better from the Covid-19 pandemic and deliver on the people’s priorities.

The Secretary of State will have responsibility for the UK’s governance and elections.

He will also take on the additional title of Minister for Intergovernmental Relations, working closely with the Territorial Offices and leading coordination with the devolved administrations on the Prime Minister’s behalf.

He will be supported in the Department by new Minister of State, Kemi Badenoch, as well as Neil O’Brien, who has been appointed as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State.

Reappointed to the Department are Ministers of State, Christopher Pincher and Lord Greenhalgh, as well as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, Eddie Hughes.

Andy Haldane will join as a Permanent Secretary in the Cabinet Office on secondment from the Royal Society of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA) for six months.

He will head up the Levelling Up Taskforce that will report jointly to the Prime Minister and the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities.

Commenting, Prime Minister, Boris Johnson said:

“This government is committed to uniting and levelling up every part of the UK and I am determined that as we build back better from the pandemic, we are geared up with the teams and expertise to deliver on that promise.

“Andy is uniquely qualified to lead our efforts to raise living standards, spread opportunity, improve our public services and restore people’s sense of pride in their communities.

“I look forward to working with him, and with my new Ministerial team, to deliver the opportunities this country needs.”

Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Michael Gove added:

“I’m thrilled that the PM has asked me to lead the levelling up agenda, the defining mission of this government.

“With a superb team of Ministers and officials in a new Department, our relentless focus will be on delivering for those overlooked families and undervalued communities across the United Kingdom.

“We have a unique opportunity to make a real difference to people’s lives.”

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