The government is today (30 October) signing the latest City Deal, an economic deal with local authorities and business groups in Ipswich.
The deal, signed by Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, Minister for Cities Greg Clark, local businesses and council leaders is the latest City Deal to get the green light from government.
The Greater Ipswich City Deal will empower the area to make the most of its economic assets and opportunities, creating thousands of new apprenticeships and giving employers more say in how money is spent on skills.
Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg MP, said:
This is an unprecedented opportunity for the people who know Ipswich best to decide how to invest millions of pounds in the region, ensuring we are building a stronger economy and doing it fairly.
It will allow Ipswich and the rest of Suffolk to be really innovative and design whole new ways to help more young people into sustainable employment and increase their earnings.
This City Deal has the genuine power to change the fortunes of many people across the region. It will give young people a greater chance of finding a job, it will help people gain extra training, improve education and provide a massive boost to the area’s businesses.
The Greater Ipswich City Deal today marks the beginning of a new era of growth and prosperity for the region.
Minister for Cities and the Constitution, Greg Clark MP, said:
This is a red letter day for Ipswich and its neighbours. Local businesses, the council and educational leaders have got together to make sure that every young person in the area will be helped to get a good, skilled job.
This is a good deal for young people, a good deal for local businesses and a good deal for the country, because a thriving Ipswich is good for Britain.
At the heart of the Greater Ipswich City Deal is an ambitious skills programme that will tackle the challenges in the local economy, placing employers at the centre of decision making.
The Greater Ipswich City Deal aims to make Suffolk more prosperous by:
- supporting 3,500 young people into work in the Greater Ipswich area
- creating and piloting a Youth Job Centre
- increasing local private and public investment in skills by at least £10 million
- creating 5,000 new apprenticeships by 2019
- creating 3,000 additional high value jobs and 400 new businesses across Suffolk and Norfolk
- developing a new approach to skills, led by employers, and a highly skilled local workforce
Paul Winter, Ipswich Building Society chief executive and chairman of the Greater Ipswich Deal Steering Group, said:
Our City Deal is a fantastic example of how the public and private sector can work together for the benefit of all. The changes that will come about as a result of the deal will make a real difference to the employment opportunities for people across the region, and I look forward to seeing the positive impact of the deal in the next few years.
Councillor David Ellesmere, Ipswich Borough Council’s leader, said:
This is excellent news for Ipswich and its neighbours. It builds on the council’s existing programmes to boost skills and create jobs. This City Deal will help us tackle youth unemployment and give our children the skills they need now to do the jobs of the future.
Councillor Mark Bee, Suffolk County Council’s leader, said:
I’m thrilled that our deal proposals have now been accepted and that we can move forward and turn our plans into reality.
Businesses constantly tell us that improving the skills that our workforce has is the most important issue for them. That’s why skills are a central part of our City Deal.
The effects of this City Deal won’t just be felt in Ipswich. The entire county stands to benefit because of the investment and improvements that will be made as a result. This is a significant moment for the future prosperity of Suffolk.
Greater Ipswich is currently worth £8.02 billion a year to the national economy - with potential to grow by 20% by 2019. It is central to the prosperity of East Anglia, providing 259,600 jobs and hosting 19,730 trading businesses. In 2011, the total population was 442,153, with 82% of the working age population being economically active.
The first wave of City Deals, agreed with the 8 core cities, were finalised in September 2012.
In October 2012, the Government invited 20 cities and their wider areas to negotiate for the second wave of City Deals.