A landmark deal to devolve powers & millions of pounds of government funding will be signed today in Plymouth by Cities Minister Greg Clark.
The City Deal will reinvigorate the region’s marine and advanced manufacturing sectors, creating over 9,000 jobs. It will also tackle deep-rooted unemployment, by providing intensive support to over 1,500 young people helping them back into employment, and support small businesses so that the region’s economy is open for business. In total, £34 million of local and national public sector investment will be provided. This will lever in £262 million of private sector investment over the long term.
The Plymouth and the South West Peninsula City Deal will benefit residents across the region, including the areas covered by Plymouth City Council, Cornwall Council, Devon County Council, Somerset County Council and Torbay Council.
The deal is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to expand the region’s marine and advanced manufacturing industries by freeing up land. This will enable marine companies to grow their operations, the relocation of supply chain companies to the region and the creation of new marine enterprises.
The flagship proposal of the deal seeks to unlock land at South Yard in Devonport Naval Base. Following the signing of this deal Plymouth City Council and the Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership will begin detailed discussions with the Ministry of Defence over releasing land at South Yard, which could provide a prime location for the marine industry due to its close proximity to other companies in the sector and has access to deep water which is needed for marine research, development, and testing.
Agreement has the potential to release 32,400 square metres of land (more than 4 times the size of the Home Park football pitch). As part of this scheme government and local partners have agreed £19 million of funding to provide infrastructure for any land that is released for development. £9 million of this funding will be provided by government.
The Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg, said:
This City Deal will breathe life into Plymouth’s maritime and manufacturing sectors, boosting jobs and growth in the whole region. Handing powers and funding from Whitehall to local people will kick-start the local economy, create over 9,000 jobs and help 1,500 young people to get into work.
Greg Clark, Minister for Cities, said:
I’m delighted to be in Plymouth to sign this landmark City Deal. I pay tribute to the way in which local politicians, businesses and the Ministry of Defence have worked so hard and effectively together for the good of the city.
Plymouth is one of the United Kingdom’s biggest assets – known all over the world for experience and excellence in marine engineering, which is one of the fastest growing markets across the world.
This deal draws on that success and sets Plymouth up to be an engine of growth for the national economy.
Detailed proposals for the use of the Ministry of Defence land will be brought forward by local partners and the government following further planning in the coming year.
Key elements of the City Deal
A boost for small and medium sized businesses
The deal will provide improved business support to all small and medium enterprises, with additional targeted business support to the marine sector. This will help increase growth rates of small and medium enterprises and further diversify the economy. £5.8 million of new government funding will be provided, along with local public sector funding and investment from the private sector. This will enable the expansion of successful schemes such as local Innovation Vouchers programmes and Business Grant schemes.
In addition the City Deal will also see the launch of new programmes such as a business start-up scheme and an Export Support Programme that will get more companies trading internationally.
A deal for young people that reduces youth unemployment and low wages
A £3.5 million investment will be made to help young people in the area get into the workforce and to make sure they are adequately skilled for the local jobs market. This will include:
- improved information, advice and guidance for young people taking decisions on their careers and education
- a new personalised case workers scheme for young people at risk of long term unemployment
- better engagement with local businesses to increase demand for national and local employment schemes such as apprenticeships
- an innovative programme that seeks to increase earning for young people
Funding for the expansion of Growth Acceleration and Investment Network comes from Round 4 Regional Growth Fund money (secured as part of this City Deal) and Regional Growth Fund Lancaster funding.
Funding for the Deal for Young People comes from a combination of national, local and European Union funding and private sector contributions, totalling £4.1 million (£1.75 million City Deal Youth Contract under spend; £400,000 local authority funding; £400,000 European Union funding; and £1.6 million of private sector contributions).