London First launches “Connectivity Commission”

Business leaders in London are expressing “growing alarm at the lack of a comprehensive strategy to secure London’s infrastructure links to the rest of the UK and the wider world”, says London First on the occasion of the launch of their “Connectivity Commission”.

Without a credible plan, they say, in the short, medium and long term, London’s ability to support the UK’s competitiveness while reaching growing international markets will be undermined.

London First has launched a Commission to examine the capacity, quality and resilience of the transport infrastructure that connects London to the rest of the UK and the constraints they face.

Demand for the capital’s infrastructure – rail, road and air – has seen, and is set to see, significant growth in demand. London First’s panel will reassess what transport links London needs in order to compete with other world cities, pursue rising international markets, and support the UK’s economic growth.

A Call for Evidence has been issued, inviting written submissions from businesses, policy makers and experts. The Commission will offer policy recommendations to Government and others to tackle constraints and secure investment in the short, medium and long-term.

Jo Valentine, Chief Executive of London First, said: “London’s ability to attract talent and investment from around the world depends on the free-flowing, frequent and predictable movement of people to and from the capital. But major infrastructure renewal in the UK is all too often the subject of sterile political debate. If London is to compete and succeed in an increasingly competitive global marketplace, more needs to be done. The Connectivity Commission will gather the views of business and experts and set out its view of a national transport strategy that will truly meet the needs of business in London, as well as the UK’s long-term aspirations for economic growth.”

The deadline for submissions from interested parties is 10 June 2011.

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