Mowat highlights North-South divide in Commons speech

David Mowat used a Commons debate on Growth to highlight the disparity in capital investment between London and the North West. The MP also highlighted the central importance of energy and particularly nuclear, in promoting economic growth.

Speaking to the motion that the House had considered the policy for growth, David Mowat said that there were three key issues that the Government needed to tackle: the huge regional disparities in economic performance, improving infrastructure and reducing energy prices and producing more graduates in subjects like science and engineering.

Mr Mowat said:

"The gross value added per person for the English regions that we have inherited is about half that for London and 20% less than that in the south-east. The fact that GVA in the regions is half that for the capital is staggering, and it is a situation that does not exist in any other OECD economy. We must fix that, and it behoves the Government to put into effect the policies that will stop that happening again.

"We have a country that is very London and south-east focused. I spent 30 years in business constantly fighting initiatives to move functions to London, and fighting the idea, "This is important; we'll have to do it in London." That is a very tough thing to have to do, and it is like pushing water uphill all the time. Another statistic that people might like to consider is that capital spend per head under the previous Government was 50% higher in London than in the north-west. That is a terrible statistic, because capital spending at that level creates private sector jobs and thereby creates affluence and prosperity."

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