'Fund rail link with Northern Infrastructure Bonds'


A new report has highlighted how bodies like Transport for the North could fund a new high-speed rail service with Northern Infrastructure Bonds.

Paying for Our Progress by IPPR North argues that an east-west ‘Crossrail for the North’ – previously known as ‘HS3’, not to mention ‘Northern Powerhouse rail’ – is key to rebalancing the UK economy after Brexit.

The North West seems to be benefitting from the Northern Powerhouse

Northern Infrastructure Bonds would raise capital on the pensions market for infrastructure projects in the region.

The report repeats claims that London will see around £1,500 more in transport spending per person than the North over the coming years.

However, it finds that the North West of England seems to be benefiting from the Government’s Northern Powerhouse strategy, and is set to see £680 per head of investment.

This is more than any region outside London, though still less than a third of the capital’s per-head spending, the IPPR said.

Andy McDonald MP, Labour’s shadow transport secretary said underinvestment in infrastructure spending in the north was ‘totally unacceptable’.

He said: ‘We need to ensure economic growth is spread beyond just London and the South East. Having a balanced economy is good for the UK as a whole but the Government seem determined to invest in London at the expense of the rest of country.’

He added: ‘Labour would make sure that the transport needs of the South-East are met while rebalancing the economy and making the necessary investment in transport infrastructure right across the UK, including prioritising a Crossrail for the North to improve connectivity between our Northern cities.’

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