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Prime Minister chairs first Council of Local Enterprise Partnership Leaders at Downing Street
The Prime Minister met with the leaders of England’s Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) this week to celebrate their achievements to date and to map out key areas for co-operation under the UK’s Modern Industrial Strategy.
It was the first meeting of the Prime Minister’s Council of LEP Chairs, made up of business leaders representing the 38 Partnerships, including Mark Duddridge, Chair of the Cornwall & Isles of Scilly LEP.
Talks focussed on where LEPs carry maximum impact: delivering the objectives of the Modern Industrial Strategy in local areas, and investing in the skills people and businesses need.
Welcoming the Council of LEP Chairs, Prime Minister Theresa May said:
“Local Enterprise Partnerships play a vital role in supporting businesses and innovation across England. They are developing skills, delivering infrastructure, and securing investment.
“That’s why our Modern Industrial Strategy is clear that they must continue to play a crucial role in our plans to deliver further growth in local economies.
“Today’s first meeting of the Council marks a milestone in this partnership. By working even more closely together, we will continue to maximise our efforts in creating jobs, growth and investment right across the country, delivering long-term, meaningful results for local communities.”
Cornwall and Isles of Scilly LEP Chair Mark Duddridge said: “The meeting was a good opportunity to highlight current achievements to the Prime Minister and identify key action areas LEPs can help government with.
“The government’s commitment to ‘place’ based development and growth, which plays to the strengths of local areas, means LEPs are ideally placed to lead local growth strategies. This is what we set out earlier this year with the publication of our 10 Opportunities investment prospectus for Cornwall and Scilly.
“The meeting was also addressed by Business Secretary Greg Clark and I was encouraged by his support for the UK’s food and drink industry as key driver of our economy, which is why we have highlighted it as a real opportunity for growth in our region, especially post-Brexit.”
During the meeting, LEPs reinforced their commitment to help deliver a national Industrial Strategy, using their strengths and expertise to lead local strategies for economic growth in partnership with local government.
The Council of Local Enterprise Partnership Chairs was announced in the 2017 Industrial Strategy White Paper as a new forum for LEP business leaders to help shape national policy decisions and ensure closer cooperation with the Government on Industrial Strategy objectives.