Civils contractors today called for the UK Government to adopt a new urgency in infrastructure policy after the publication of the National Infrastructure Commission (NIC)’s 2023 Infrastructure Progress Review.
The NIC warns that the UK Government’s infrastructure policy is “not delivering fast enough” in the race to deliver a net zero economy and boost economic growth.
Commenting, Chief Executive of the Civil Engineering Contractors Association (CECA) Alasdair Reisner said: “The National Infrastructure Commission’s remit is to provide expert, impartial advice on the UK’s infrastructure needs, which is why it should concern Whitehall that it has warned that the implementation of its recommendations in the past year has been ‘too slow.’
“In particular, recent months have seen further uncertainty and delay in delivering the nationally-significant infrastructure project HS2, while the NIC is also right to highlight that the UK Government’s targets on decarbonising key sectors of the economy is not progressing with sufficient urgency to meet the scale of the climate challenge.
“It is clear that the UK economy is suffering disappointing growth, not least due to the impact of inflation, the war in Ukraine, and the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It is imperative that the UK Government match the ambitions of its infrastructure policy with a new urgency to deliver on its goals.
“This must mean an end to prevarication over major schemes such as HS2, efforts at all levels of government to unlock growth-boosting projects in all parts of the country, and a redoubling of practical measures to devolve funding and decision-making powers to the local communities that require infrastructure investment.
“We call on the UK Government to work with industry to take practical steps to streamline the implementation of its infrastructure ambitions, by unlocking schemes and getting spades on the ground on the projects necessary to boost growth, create jobs, and deliver the zero-carbon economy of the future.”
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