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South West Growth Charter published

07th November 2017

image depicting South West Growth Summit

A Growth Charter, aimed at boosting prosperity and productivity in the South West, has been sent to Government ahead of the Chancellor's Autumn Statement.

It follows a South West Growth Summit at Exeter University on 21 October, organised by Exeter-based Pennon, in partnership with the Western Morning News and with the support of the Local Enterprise Partnerships for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly and the Heart of the South West, and attended by more than 200 people from councils, businesses and other organisations across the region. 

The Summit showed a clear need and desire for a unified business voice to outline a vision for the economic future of Somerset, Devon and Cornwall.

The resultant South West Growth Charter was developed by Pennon, owners of South West Water, Bournemouth Water and Viridor, with the endorsement of the CBI and after consulting with the Local Enterprise Partnerships. 

It supports the Government's industrial strategy and sets out how the Government can work with the region to increase investment and opportunities for people of all ages.

The Charter outlines:

  • A new government partnership with the South West
  • The need for increased investment in digital connectivity to deliver ultra-fast 5G mobile, fibre and wireless broadband to the South West
  • The need to make improvements to energy systems in the region
  • The need for more investment in transport connectivity, especially in rail and local road links

Pennon Chief Executive Chris Loughlin said:  "As one of the biggest private employers and investors in the region, we wanted to take a lead in facilitating this new regional growth initiative, in collaboration with our partners in the public and private sectors.  The South West is a great place to live and work, and has a strong entrepreneurial spirit.

"We firmly believe that by working together with central government the South West can successfully tackle the issues it faces and build on its many strengths.  This could deliver increased productivity and more, better paid employment opportunities, helping our region to retain and attract highly qualified workers."

Published: 7 November 2016

For further information please contact:

Press Office
South West Water