LEP outlines spending plans

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The Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) has been outlining its spending priorities for the next round of European funding.

lep logo

Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly have been earmarked for a further €592.9 million of investment from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the European Social Fund (ESF) from 2014 to 2020.

And the LEP has been asked by the Government to produce a draft investment strategy by early October, with a final document submitted in January 2014, on how it feels the money would be best spent.

The LEP board has approved an outline investment plan that builds on the LEP’s economic strategy that was published last year, and follows a number of themes set out by the EU.

The draft strategy covers 14 investment areas and has a significant emphasis on growing local businesses to create jobs.

Chris Pomfret
Chris Pomfret

This includes intensive business support, investment in growth markets like marine renewable energy and the digital economy, investment in research and innovation, skills development, energy efficiency and in infrastructure to remove barriers to growth.

LEP Chairman Chris Pomfret said: “We have consulted widely in arriving at these headline investment plans and this is the latest step in agreeing with Government where we believe our allocation of European funding can have the maximum long- term impact on the economy of Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

“Our message to ministers is that Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly have an excellent track record when it comes to investing public money wisely, but we would like the flexibility to make sure we can get the job done.

“We’re at the roadmap stage right now. Once we have agreement early next year on our final investment strategy we can work up the detailed projects that will create growth and jobs over the next seven years.”

For a summary of the draft 2014-202 European Structural and Investment Fund Strategy, and to comment before it is finalised in the next few weeks, click here.

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