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Rural Areas

Volume 463: debated on Wednesday 12 September 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government whether she intends formally to establish any rural or non-metropolitan equivalents of city regions. (155336)

City-regions are currently voluntary local authority partnerships and are not established by the Government.

The review of sub-national economic development and regeneration, undertaken by HM Treasury, The Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform and my Department, was published in July 2007 and sets out the economic benefits of sub-regional working. The review states that the Government will work with interested sub-regions to explore the potential for allowing groups of local authorities to establish sub-regional authorities which enable pooling of economic development responsibilities. This offer is open to rural and non-metropolitan areas, as well as city-regions.