Strategy aims to boost regional economy

A LONG-term strategy to transform the region's economy was launched yesterday at the annual meeting of the East of England Development Agency (EEDA).The new regional economic strategy (RES), “Inventing our future: Collective action for a sustainable economy”, sets out a vision of globally-competitive region with ambitious targets for economic growth, skills, employment, greenhouse gas emissions, resource efficiency and reducing inequalities.

A LONG-term strategy to transform the region's economy was launched yesterday at the annual meeting of the East of England Development Agency (EEDA).

The new regional economic strategy (RES), “Inventing our future: Collective action for a sustainable economy”, sets out a vision of globally-competitive region with ambitious targets for economic growth, skills, employment, greenhouse gas emissions, resource efficiency and reducing inequalities.

It aims to boost the performance of the economy by building on the region's traditional strengths of research and development, innovation and leading the way in new areas such as environmental technologies.

EEDA has led the process to develop the strategy, to which hundreds of organisations, individuals, businesses and interest groups have contributed through workshops and public consultations.


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The East of England Regional Assembly, which comprises the region's local authorities, business representative organisations including the CBI and the Institute of Directors, the TUC, the Environment Agency and others have pledged support for the strategy following some 18 months of development and consultation.

Welcoming the new strategy, Barbara Follett, Minister for the East of England, said yesterday: “The new strategy sets ambitious targets for economic growth, skills, employment, equality and the environment, which show a welcome commitment by the East of England to many of the Government's key objectives.

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“I would like to praise the energy and expertise that EEDA, EERA and other stakeholders in the region have put into its development. We have now achieved a consensus on the strategic direction we need to take if we are to tackle successfully the economic and environmental challenges which lie ahead.”

Richard Ellis, chairman of EEDA, added: “The strengths of the regional economy, which has been one of the most robust economies in the first half of 2008, are that it has developed high-value, globally-competitive businesses and is a top-three European centre for research and development.

“The regional economic strategy launched today sets out a vision for where we would like to be in 2031 and what we need to do together as a region to get there. I look forward to continuing the productive working with regional partners and business leaders over the coming months and years to enable the region to capitalise on its numerous strengths and to achieve these ambitions.”

The RES can be accessed online at www.eastofengland.uk.com/res, where visitors can customise their own RES document to download. Copies of supporting materials and evidence underpinning the RES are also available, together with links to further information about the implementation phase.

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