Lord Haskins, Humber Local Enterprise Partnership chairman, will launch a five-year plan for the region’s economic development on Friday 12th October.
The Plan’s main focus is on realising the potential of the Humber Estuary, which the LEP believes can power the regional and national economies.
Described in the Plan as ‘a unique natural asset’, the Estuary is already home to the UK’s largest ports complex and has several major competitive advantages for offshore wind that have led to strong interest from potential investors in the sector.
Developing an energy super cluster centred on offshore wind, but also including the Humber’s existing generating capacity and emerging strengths in biomass, biofuels, energy from waste and tidal stream power, forms a major part of the Plan.
The Plan also underlines that the potential of the Estuary is not limited to energy, with capturing a bigger share of trade between Britain and Europe and expanding freight, passenger and cruise services being key objectives.
The business leaders will also hear that to achieve the region’s potential, several barriers must be overcome, including raising skill levels among the workforce and improving infrastructure.
Other priorities include developing the Humber brand and supporting local companies to trade internationally.
Lord Haskins will also call for more cooperation between private and public sectors and a new, mature relationship with central government in order to achieve the Plan’s economic objectives.
“Our Plan for the Humber is grounded in reality and deliverable,” he said.
“We have looked at the Humber’s competitive advantages and main opportunities for growth and captured them in a document that everyone can sign up to.
“The LEP is now looking to deliver these objectives with local and national partners. Close working relationships both locally and with government are essential.
“The Humber’s offer for ports and energy leads the UK so we want to continue our excellent relationships with government departments to ensure that we reach our potential and play our part in the economic recovery.”
Lord Haskins will stress that the plan’s objectives cannot be tackled by the LEP on its own and that the continued commitment of a wide range of partners will be required.
Michael Fallon MP, Minister for Business and Enterprise, said: “For Local Enterprise Partnerships to be truly successful, they must have a clear vision demonstrating how they will drive growth in their communities and deliver a real boost in the local economy.
“The Humber LEP’s plan builds on its strengths in leadership and local business knowledge, and will use the relationships it has with civic leaders and local firms to implement its ambitions. I look forward to seeing the partnership deliver this growth plan and make a real difference across the Humber.”
The LEP published the Plan for the Humber in draft in the summer and received dozens of supportive comments that helped to shape the final version. Feedback from the Government departments that the LEP is working with to deliver the Plan has also been positive.
- The Humber LEP Forum takes place at the Forest Pines Hotel near Scunthorpe on Friday October 12 from 8 – 9.30am
- The Plan will be available online from Friday at www.humberlep.org