Further confidence in the Northern Powerhouse has been expressed, with backing from the prime minister and a number of major international organisations.
Ey, Colliers International and Santander are three of eight new partners to sign up to the Northern Powerhouse Initiative. This forms part of a larger pot of almost 90 businesses, universities and other organisations that pledge their support to the scheme.
Name dropping some of the other major players and household names, Northern Powerhouse Minister Andrew Percy commented that “from Siemens to Vodafone, the investment being made by major businesses is further proof that the Northern Powerhouse economy is firing on all cylinders”.
The comment seems to be an almost direct response to Theresa May’s earlier statement in which she stated: “I don’t want to see our country dependent on one city any more. I want to get all of our great cities firing on all cylinders to rebalance our economy.”
That said, May’s backing of the scheme has been questioned since her arrival at Downing Street. Ex-Chancellor, George Osborne once accused May for having a bit of a “wobble” over the scheme. However, she appears to be in full backing of the initiative, promising to “help the great cities and towns of the North pool their strengths and take on the world”.
Percy believes that having the backing of almost 90 different organisations is vital to “securing the economic future of the north for years to come”, whilst Commercial Secretary Baroness Neville-Rolfe claims her commitment to “securing the infrastructure, investment and support the north needs to become a global economic heavyweight at the very heart of the UK economy”.
John Whittaker, chairman of the Peel Group has invested £5 billion across the North with his partners, and sees a “new impetus on promoting international trade and investment with local, national and international partners” after Brexit.
This adds further allure to overseas property investors who, according to a recent CBRE report, see the Powerhouse as a strong international brand that “offers a safe, globally recognised investment”.