Hidden amongst the raft of measures introduced during arguably one of the most important budgets of recent times, Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced an exciting new development for Yorkshire, which could help shape both the region and nation’s future.
The introduction of a new infrastructure bank, which will be based in Leeds, has been set up to fund and oversee many new national and regional infrastructure projects. It will start with £12bn in capital, which will be available to invest in sectors such as renewable energy, carbon capture, transport and digital, to the tune of £40bn. These projects will help to start a ‘green revolution which will ultimately go towards achieving the government targets of reaching net zero carbon emissions by 2050 and help accelerate the economic recovery following the Covid-19 pandemic. The bank also replaces the finance for such projects which would have been provided by the EU before Brexit.
The decision to base the bank, which is the first of its kind in the UK in Leeds, has been met with positivity by local politicians and enterprise groups.
The leader of Leeds City council, James Lewis commented,
“The news that Leeds will be the home of the new national infrastructure bank is a vote of confidence in the city and everyone who lives here. This move will give Leeds a central role in decisions that will shape the country’s future and its potentially transformative power should not be underestimated.”
Roger Marsh, Chair of Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership added:
“Locating this powerful national institution in our region will be a real catalyst for change and a major driver of our post-pandemic recovery.
The new bank will work in tandem with the Treasury North campus which will be located in Darlington. It will start in the spring of 2021 and accelarate its activities in the second half of the year.