Blog: Sir John Peace speaking in Midlands Matters, edition 18

Date posted: October 19, 2021
sir john peace

In the latest edition of Midlands Matters, the partnership newsletter of the Midlands Engine, our chairman Sir John Peace discusses the recent party conference season.

Uniquely, the Midlands Engine partnership is a truly collaborative, pan-regional force.

A force that brings together government partners, world-leading universities and hundreds and thousands of businesses.

Together, we’re combining our efforts and energies for a more prosperous Midlands – a place that almost 11 million people call home.

During the last few weeks, Midlands Engine colleagues and I have had the privilege to represent our partners at the Labour and Conservative Party Conferences – making sure the Midlands voice is heard and your priorities are championed.

These two important events were a chance to shine a spotlight on our phenomenal strengths – in low carbon innovation, health and science, digital connectivity, R&D and manufacturing and more.

But it was also vital that we highlighted the inequalities we know exist right across our region, in terms of health, wealth and opportunity – inequalities that are deepening and that will only be exacerbated by current national crises without aligned actions – long-term government investment working hand in hand with local public partners and the private sector to power economic recovery and future growth in our region.

In all our conversations with Ministers, Shadow Ministers and MPs over the last few weeks – and there have been many – we have stressed the need to level the playing field.

The productivity gap in our region is over £80 billion GVA and it has grown by £10 billion since 2016.

If the Midlands were enabled to perform at just the England average, the increase in output would be £80 billion more for the UK each year, on top of the almost £250 billion GVA our region already drives, annually.

The economic and social gains of investing now, in our region and its exceptional opportunities, will be powerful and lasting.

And the way we will achieve this is through partnership – working together in so many innovative ways, as this and all other Midlands Matters showcase, to level up for greater economic growth, greater social mobility and greater opportunity.

For the latest on our region, subscribe to Midlands Matters, the official newsletter of the Midlands Engine.

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