LEP Chairman welcomes announcement of Regional Growth Fund round 4
A new round of the Regional Growth Fund opened on Thursday 17th January as LEP Chairman James Newman called on businesses in the Sheffield City Region to bid for a share of the £350 million cash pot.
The Regional Growth Fund has already helped 180 projects get started, nationally, creating and safeguarding local jobs and attracting significant private sector investment.
James Newman, Chairman of the Sheffield City Region Local Enterprise Partnership, said:
“I welcome news that the Government has opened a fourth round of the Regional Growth Fund, which I hope help release the huge untapped potential in the Sheffield City Region.
“In October last year, we secured £25 million of RGF money for our ambitious programme ‘Unlocking Business Investment’. We are making great progress in delivering this programme – working with the 27 businesses named in our original bid and issuing a call for new projects.
“We have received an unprecedented level of interest in our programme and it is clear that our existing £25m programme is going to be a huge success. This is why it is likely that we will be asking Government to “top up” our existing programme to accommodate this level of demand.
“I encourage businesses with projects to make an application to the existing programme via our website and consider whether, for larger projects worth more than £2 million, a direct bid to the national programme would be appropriate.”
Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said:
“The Regional Growth Fund is already proving a shrewd investment by providing a welcome boost to jobs and growth across the country, with thousands of jobs created, businesses expanding into new markets and manufacturing new products. With this next round of funding, I would urge England’s budding businesses to produce top quality bids to access the money that can help them grow.
“There’ll be stiff competition, and we can only invest in those projects that will lead to sustainable jobs and the best value for money. Boosting jobs and growth is our number one priority for Britain right now. That is why I am so pleased to be opening a fourth round of the Regional Growth Fund which supports growth across a range of industries.”
The Business Minister Michael Fallon also encouraged firms to apply stating:
“The Regional Growth Fund is playing a pivotal role in supporting business and enterprise. Jobs are being created, money is being invested and the fund is making a difference. This additional round and the improved processes we have put in place will help keep the momentum going.”
The Deputy Prime Minister confirmed that the Regional Growth Fund is progressing well with 180 projects having started (89 per cent). Projects from the first three rounds have pledged to create or safeguard a total of 500,000 jobs along with an injection of £13 billion private sector investment into the economy.
The Regional Growth Fund is helping to rebalance the economy by investing in companies that can create jobs and attract substantial match-funding from the private sector. For every pound of government money, the private sector is putting in six pounds.
Round 4 of the Regional Growth Fund will close to applications on 20 March at noon and bids will be appraised as quickly as possible.