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Liberal Democrat News 26 October 2012

October 26, 2012 8:26 AM
Originally published by UK Liberal Democrats

New £1bn boost for regional growth

The £1bn third round of the Coalition Government's Regional Growth Fund was announced by Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg last week. This is another massive investment in new jobs across England. It will create or safeguard thousands of jobs over the long term, benefitting around 130 projects and leveraging £6bn of private sector investment.

For too long, the economy has been lopsided and over-reliant on financial speculators in only one Square Mile. As we build a new economy from the rubble of the old, Liberal Democrats in the Coalition Government want to rebalance the economy so that it benefits the whole country, not just London and the South East.

The Business Secretary, Vince Cable went to Liverpool to visit Redx Pharma, a UK-based pharmaceutical company, which has been allocated £4.7m in round three, for research into drugs against microbial infection, influenza, hepatitis C and HIV. The project is expected to create 119 jobs over five years.

The government investment will help manufacturing firms, small businesses and local partnerships across England to expand their operations, create new jobs and stimulate growth - the Coalition's top priority.

Bidders will be putting in £6bn of their own cash for these projects and programmes which are expected to create and safeguard more than 240,000 jobs over the long term. This comes in addition to the 300,000 jobs that are being created or safeguarded from rounds one and two of the fund - the majority of which are being added over the next five years.

"This £1bn boost for growth in towns and cities across England is creating jobs that will last in the parts of the country that need it most," said Nick
"In tough economic times the Regional Growth Fund is good value for taxpayers' money - this £1bn round of the fund is pulling in £6bn of private sector investment.

"I have seen for myself the real difference this makes on the ground - from iconic businesses like Eddie Stobart expanding in Widnes and creating 3,450 jobs in the local area, to the Sunderland car parts factory, Unipres who have used their funding to buy a new 3,000 tonne press, letting them accelerate production and take on an extra 316 people.

"The Regional Growth Fund is working, on track and supporting businesses to create jobs and grow the economy."