Our 'future local economy’ priorities for the King’s speech

Johnny Haseltine, Policy Manager at British Chambers of Commerce

Thrive local economies are fundamental to accelerating opportunities and growth across the UK. Businesses are growing in the heart of local areas.

But now, businesses are being held back by a planning system desperate for reform. That is why the King’s speech should indicate the government’s commitment to building a faster, streamlined and better resource planning system.

We need more quality housing in places where people want to live and work. At the same time, businesses need land to invest, innovate and grow. However, in many parts of the country, companies are being pushed out of towns and cities – as good quality land is made available for housing needs. Achieving the right balance of land for jobs and housing is key to boosting local economic growth and ensuring businesses and communities thrive together.

Accelerating the planning process will increase business investment and open up development opportunities across the country. That is why more resources, skills and technology are needed to increase the capacity of local planning authorities, leading to faster and more efficient service delivery. The government should fulfill its promise of injecting more funds into the system.

Much more needs to be done to ensure stability and certainty for business in the planning process. The business operates in a global market and if it cannot provide investors with the confidence it needs, it may lose investment to other parts of the world.

Planning is important for business. It helps deliver growth, supports investment, improves access to skills and supports supply chains. A more effective and responsive system will promote sustainable growth and prosperity for all.

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