Contractors Welcome Lib Dem Manifesto And Urge Focus On Infrastructure For Growth

The UK’s civils contractors today welcomed the publication of the Liberal Democrats’ manifesto ahead of the General Election, and urged all parties to adopt a laser-focussed approach to infrastructure for growth.

The Liberal Democrats have pledged to make Britain “a world leader in the new infrastructure, businesses and technologies needed to tackle climate change” with a strong emphasis on the UK’s infrastructure being a key part of delivering the net-zero future we all require.

The most notable announcements from the manifesto are pledges to:

  •  Give more of the roads budget to local councils to maintain existing roads, pavements and cycleways, including repairing potholes.
  • Deliver Northern Powerhouse Rail to connect cities across the North of England.
  • Review the Conservatives’ cancellation of the northern leg of HS2 to see if it can still be delivered in a way that provides value for money, including by encouraging private investment, or if an alternative is viable.
  • Devolve greater decision-making powers and resources to local authorities in England to design public transport infrastructure around community needs, including powers to introduce network-wide ticketing as in London.
  • Replace the apprenticeship levy with a broader and more flexible skills and training levy.

Commenting, Director of Operations for the Civil Engineering Contractors Association (CECA) Marie-Claude Hemming said: “This week will see the publication of manifestos from the main UK political parties, and it is heartening that the Liberal Democrats have launched their platform with solid commitments to infrastructure investment as the means of delivering sustainable economic growth.

“CECA will always work with all political parties and governments at all levels to ensure that our members can get on with delivering the world-class infrastructure businesses and communities across the UK deserve.

“Election season will always produce eye-catching press stories, but we are committed to ensuring that amidst the understandable press excitement our message – that infrastructure investment is the surest way of creating jobs and boosting economic growth – is not lost in the noise.

“The publication of the Liberal Democrat manifesto shows that this message is cutting through, and we look forward to working with all parties across the UK to ensure that CECA members can deliver the infrastructure our economy relies on to thrive, irrespective of which party or parties form the next UK Government.”