The UK government has launched a National Infrastructure Plan to update and modernise the country’s infrastructure. Prime Minister David Cameron unveiled a £200 billion (€227.4 billion; $317.2 billion) investment plan for the UK, funding for which will come from both public and private sectors.
“We are publishing a detailed plan setting out the infrastructure Britain needs and how we will unlock £200 billion worth of public and private sector investment to deliver it,” Cameron said.
Speaking at the Confederation of Business Industry (CBI) conference in London, Cameron said that previous underinvestment in infrastructure meant that while the rest of the world was moving ahead, Britain had been standing still.
“The infrastructure investment programme will help rebalance the economy and give industries the right conditions in which to grow,” Cameron said.
Despite spending cuts, the government has announced an investment of over £30 billion in transport projects over the next four years, including a high-speed rail network, an underground upgrade in London and a green investment bank, according to an official document.
Meanwhile, Cameron also said that in order to drive growth in the economy, the government will provide a competitive environment for private sector growth. He said the country is facing tough competition from business destinations like the US, China and India.
Cameron also announced £60 million of government funding to establish world-class offshore wind manufacturing at ports. He said the potential for Britain to lead the world in the offshore wind industry was “immense,” especially as thousands of turbines would be needed in the next decade.
“We need thousands of offshore turbines in the next decade and beyond, yet neither the factories nor these large port sites currently exist. And that, understandably, is putting off private investors. So we’re stepping in. To help secure private sector investment in this technology, we’re providing up to £60 million to meet the needs of offshore wind infrastructure at our ports,” Cameron said.
Last week, the UK government announced it would cut £81 billion of government spending over the next four years as part of the spending review. However, infrastructure emerged largely unaffected from the announced cuts.