Birmingham Chamber of Commerce Group (BCCG) was among hundreds of Britain’s economists, business leaders, trade unions, politicians and council leaders who today called for the Government to approve HS2
They were also among the signatories to letters to national and regional papers urging the Government to approve plans for HS2 and to push ahead with construction as soon as possible. A decision is expected on Tuesday.
Twenty-eight of theUK’s top economists wrote to The Financial Times arguing that theUK’s poor infrastructure is a major vulnerability toBritain’s economic competitiveness.
Over 100UKbusiness leaders, including Birmingham Chamber chief executive Jerry Blackett, joined forces to write to The Daily Telegraph, saying that the lack of a high-speed rail line connecting the north ofEnglandtoLondonand the European Union is a continuous embarrassment to British businesses promoting UK plc overseas.
He said: “HS2 will mean it will take just 39 minutes to travel fromLondontoBirminghamand will help erode the north south divide by drawing investment and skilled workers away from the economic stranglehold of the south east.”
Writing to The Guardian, 5 Trade Unions, representing over 1.5m people argued that with 2.64 million people unemployed, theUKcannot afford not to invest infrastructure such as HSR.
In fiveUKregions, council leaders and MPs wrote to their local papers saying that HS2 will help to encourage regional growth and job creation.
The call comes ahead of the Government’s announcement on the findings of the HS2 consultation which closed in July last year.
The business leaders said: “As business leaders and job-creators, we recognise thatBritain’s poor infrastructure is a major vulnerability to our future long-term growth prospects.
“HSR has, for decades, proven itself as an effective mode of transport around the world. In addition to complementing traditional transport systems, HSR allows us to get goods and services to market in a secure and timely manner, as well as facilitating our ability to reach new customers.”