Mark reacts to the 2018 Budget...
“For the UK’s infrastructure, the immediate cash injection of £420 million for local authorities to undertake road maintenance should be praised for its unusual nod to localised infrastructure issues that have been overlooked in past Budgets. However, the time given to the Chancellor’s pothole plans were in stark contrast to the speed with which major infrastructure projects were covered in his speech. While the Government’s continued support of the Northern Powerhouse, the Midlands Engine and the East-West rail initiatives is positive and welcomed, a question mark remains over whether the Government truly recognises infrastructure as fundamental to delivering growth with much of the detail left in the red book. A commitment to end PFI and PF2 was strong in sentiment, however with none in the pipeline, this is perhaps easier to say. There was an expectation we might have had more major infrastructure announcements.
“Housing fared better with the Chancellor announcing £500 million for the Housing Infrastructure Fund, the removal of the local authority borrowing cap and the surprise provision for councils to provide housing for sale at a discount to local people. These measures should give private housebuilders, housing associations and local authorities the confidence to build.”
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