Confused (dot) LEP?

Comment added also as post by Owl – who is also confused.

“It’s all very confusing (especially sorting out your NUTS 1,2&3).

The joint covering letter from the two LEPs (one of which appears to have its own joint committee just to confuse things further) says:

“We have put forward two submissions; one on behalf of Cornwall Council and Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership and another on behalf of the Heart of the South West Joint Committee and the HotSW Local Enterprise Partnership representing Devon, Plymouth, Somerset and Torbay.”

They also go on to say:

“We are submitting this joint letter as being neighbouring areas we have similar policy asks which the committee might find helpful to have highlighted as well as the nuances that are described in our two responses. There is no clear definition of what constitutes a region and we believe these two documents provide detailed insight into the complexity of this subject.”

So Cornwall (and the Scilly Isles) gets the joint forward plus a detailed response under the heading:

“Written evidence submitted by Cornwall Council and Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership, 2nd August 2019″ [4,342 words and four graphs – a lot of nuance and explanation of complexity particular to Cornwall in here. Good for them.]

The Heart of the South West joint letter is followed by…………….NOTHING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Couldn’t be bothered or just forgot to add it? Sadly, either way, the people of Devon and Somerset have lost out.”

East Devon Alliance only group submitting evidence to Parliament on Devon’s regional growth – our LEP just added its name to Cornwall’s evidence – for Cornwall and Plymouth!

East Devon Alliance submitted evidence to Treasury inquiry into regional growth: this wax pertinent, spwell-reasoned evidence. It was the ONLY submission solely on behalf of Devon:

https://eastdevonwatch.org/2019/09/05/parliament-publishes-evidence-from-east-devon-alliance-on-unrealistic-growth-figures-and-flaws-compounded-by-our-local-enterprise-partnership/

Cornwall and Cornwall and Isles of Scilly evidence (to which our Devon and Somerset LEP added its name only to a generic one-page “Joint Statement” covering letter) was skewed (as it should be) ONLY towards Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly and Plymouth – concentrating on them being in the same EU region (NUTS2), and therefore not concerning itself with any other part of Devon:

http://data.parliament.uk/writtenevidence/committeeevidence.svc/evidencedocument/treasury-committee/regional-imbalances-in-the-uk/written/104187.html

Our LEP simply duplicated the generic one-page covering letter in the above Cornwall submission as its only contribution for itself:

http://data.parliament.uk/writtenevidence/committeeevidence.svc/evidencedocument/treasury-committee/regional-imbalances-in-the-uk/written/104182.html

South West, which voted to leave the EU, slowest growing English region since the 2016 referendum”

South-west growth 0.25% since referendum, slowest of all regions since the referendum in 2016. Hello, Local Enterprise Partnership – HELLO! Any response? Any new figures? Any new ideas?

London’s financial services sector has been in recession since the third quarter of 2017, regional GDP figures from the Office for National Statistics have revealed.

In the 18 months to the end of last year the capital’s banking and asset management industry shrank 11 per cent. The ONS did not explain the slump but it is likely to be related to Brexit as banks and insurers downsized British operations and directed new investment overseas.

The regional GDP figures, which cover England and Wales, revealed that the South West, which voted to leave the EU, has been the slowest growing English region since the 2016 referendum. It grew 0.25 per cent between the second quarter of 2016 and the end of last year.

The figures, which start in the second quarter of 2012 and run to the final quarter of last year, show that London has grown the fastest, expanding 21 per cent, while the North East and South West have been slowest, at 5.5 per cent and 7 per cent respectively.

London’s success has been despite the downturn in the square mile. Financial services contributed £132 billion to GDP last year, 6.9 per cent of total output, with half of that from the capital. Of the industry’s 1.1 million jobs, 400,000 were in London last year, analysis by the House of Commons library showed. …”

Parliament publishes evidence from East Devon Alliance on unrealistic growth figures and flaws compounded by our Local Enterprise Partnership

Presented to, and published by, the Treasury Committee on Regional Imbalances in the UK Economy Inquiry.

A top-notch forensic dissection of unattainable growth figures, plucked out of thin air by our Local Enterprise Partnership, and accommodated by our county and district councils without scrutiny:

http://data.parliament.uk/writtenevidence/committeeevidence.svc/evidencedocument/treasury-committee/regional-imbalances-in-the-uk/written/103800.html

Employment, wages and growth – good news – not so sure

“Following the pattern of recent months, the labour market statistics exhibit a shift towards less secure forms of employment. While the overall employment level continued to rise in the three months to May of this year, the composition of this increase is a source of some concern. The number of full-time employees fell by some 77000, and the number of part-time employees also fell slightly. There was a modest increase in the number of full-time self-employed workers, but the main source of employment growth has been part-time self-employment.

This grew by a massive 104,000 over the quarter. While many jobs of this kind offer workers the flexibility that they might want, this may come at a cost in terms of insecurity. As parts of the traditional engine room struggle in the current economic climate, workers may increasingly be turning to the gig economy.”

https://www.theguardian.com/business/live/2019/jul/16/markets-uk-unemployment-wages-ryanair-boeing-737-max-mark-carney-business-live?CMP=Share_iOSApp_Other

East Devon to have vast Amazon warehouse staffed by ….. well, that depends …..

Many readers will be too young to remember Rast Devon’s plans to develop an ‘inter-modal transport hub’ on the outskirts of Exeter, about which many promised were made and broken. There was even a cursory planning application in 2010:

https://planning.eastdevon.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=neighbourComments&keyVal=LB8Z9LGH03P00

Eventually all or part of the site (Owl is none too sure) was bought up by Sainsbury’s who said they would build, well, something. Another promise broken.

Eventually, part of the site was bought by Lidl, who built a massive warehouse.

Now, it seems Amazon is going to build a second massive warehouse, next to the Lidl one:

https://www.midweekherald.co.uk/news/amazon-set-to-take-on-industrial-unit-on-outskirts-of-cranbrook-1-6125408

Many jobs (200 in the article) are promised to the lucky (or unlucky) residents of Cranbrook – which way you look at it depends on what you research about both Amazon’s working conditions and future plans:

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2018/may/31/amazon-accused-of-treating-uk-warehouse-staff-like-robots?CMP=Share_iOSApp_Other

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2019/may/20/unions-lobby-investors-to-press-amazon-over-uk-working-conditions?CMP=Share_iOSApp_Other

The desire of most of these warehousing companies – including Amazon – is NOT to treat their workers like robots (though it is alleged that some of them do) but to REPLACE them by robots.

Progress it’s called.

“Is it time to end our fixation with GDP and growth?”

“Why are we so fixated on economic growth?

Since the mid-20th century, economic growth has taken on a dominant position in the way practically every country arranges its affairs and priorities.

Growth has become shorthand for increasing living standards. It often means more people in work and more companies in business. Its opposite, recession, normally means bankruptcies and redundancies.

And so growth has become a holy grail for governments seeking re-election.

But some people have benefited more from growth than others, despite global gross domestic product (GDP) growing by more than 5,000% since the 1960s. Inequality has boomed in advanced economies since the 1970s, while the mounting risk of catastrophic global warming raises serious questions about the links between growth and carbon emissions.

Yet our economies have become structurally dependent on growth. Finance ministries and central banks pursue economic expansion as the primary goal, with rising GDP providing higher taxes.

Growth as a metaphor for prosperity has become deeply embedded through language. We like to see our children grow, or our gardens. Growth as a fundamentally human movement is life and progress. But there is another end of the metaphor: that growth can be cancerous. …”

https://www.theguardian.com/news/2019/jun/17/is-time-to-end-our-fixation-with-gdp-and-growth?CMP=Share_iOSApp_Other

Now Tories are not in control Swire decides Cranbrook is a development problem!

Today’s Midweek Herald. SO odd that Hugo has JUST discovered that Cranbrook development is a problem … still TiggerTories involved in planning will be glad to know he is NOW onside! Such a pity he wasn’t so vocal when Tories alone were in charge!

Those optimistic “growth” figures from our LEP look even more unlikely

“Calling an organisation the “UK 2070 Commission” is not without its risks. Who cares what happens that far out?

But that, in a sense, is the point. The commission, set up to investigate Britain’s “marked regional inequalities”, publishes its first report today. And, as its chairman Lord Kerslake puts it: “If you want to understand what happens in economics, you need to look 50 years back and 50 years out.” Indeed, as the commission notes: “The reference to 2070 is an explicit recognition that the timescales for successful city and regional development are often very long, in contrast to the short-termism of political cycles.”

A Brexit-addled government nicely illustrates that — not that it’ll have been any surprise to Lord Kerslake, the ex-head of the home civil service. And in these distracted times, the report is doubly welcome. It kills the myth that inequality is not on the rise and helps to explain Brexit — or at least the disparity between Remainer London and the Brexiteer regions.

The report finds London “de-coupling from the rest of the UK”. And to nobody’s benefit. Research from Sheffield University professor Philip McCann finds the “UK is interregionally more unequal” than 28 of the 30 advanced OECD countries, the exceptions being Ireland and Slovakia.

Productivity in the capital is 50 per cent higher than the rest of the UK. Indeed, similar growth between 1992 and 2015 from cities outside London would have added at least “£120 billion to the national economy”. And, on present trends, half of the UK’s future jobs growth will be in London and the South East, which accounts for only 37 per cent of the population.

The effects show up everywhere. Healthy life expectancy in the UK’s poorest regions is “19 years lower”. The Joseph Rowntree Foundation found in 2016 that dealing with the effects of poverty costs the UK £78 billion a year. And, even then, poor is a relative term. The children’s commissioner for England found that “a child who is poor enough for free school meals in Hackney, one of London’s poorest boroughs, is still three times more likely to go on to university than an equally poor child in Hartlepool”.

No one wins from such imbalances. People and businesses in the North “miss out on the benefits of growth” — forcing more spending on benefits. But those in “overheating” London and the South East find “increasing pressures on living costs and resources”, so reducing “quality of life”. That forces spending on pricey infrastructure, exacerbating the imbalances. Hence Crossrail, a phase-one HS2 skewed to the capital and an environmentally damaging third Heathrow runway.

So, what to do? Well, here the commission suggests a mix of regional devolution and German-style national planning. It points to the eye-popping €1.5 trillion spent post-unification to help to bring east Germany up to speed with the west. For Britain, it proposes an extra £10 billion spend annually for the next 25 years: a fabulous sum equating to 0.5 per cent of GDP. Lord Kerslake says it’s for government to decide whether it would come from borrowings, tax or such things as levies on uplifts in property values.

Yet he reckons “higher regional growth rates would over time offset this cost”. He emphasises, too, that this is just an initial report, seeking feedback. And don’t the divisions over Brexit underline that Britain needs to do something? Waiting until 2070 isn’t an option.”

Source: The Times (pay wall)