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Road and Rail Investment

Volume 636: debated on Tuesday 27 February 2018

4. What recent assessment the Government have made of the effect of the national productivity investment fund on road and rail infrastructure in the north-west. (904031)

This Government have put raising our national productivity at the heart of our mission. From the national productivity investment fund, we have already announced over £50 million of investment in road and rail in the north-west, and this is in addition to the transforming cities allocations to Manchester of £243 million and to Liverpool of £135 million.

Does my hon. Friend agree that the £31 billion national productivity investment fund, targeted at transport, digital communications, research and development and housing, will boost the infrastructure of the UK economy?

The latest statistics show that we have had the best run of productivity growth since before the financial crisis, but we are certainly not complacent. The national productivity investment fund is improving passenger journeys, our roads and our broadband connections and delivering more homes, all of which are key to raising the wages and living standards of people in Southport and across the country.

The problem is that the national productivity investment fund is not doing anything to stop the disrepair on our roads and motorways. The Government are simply not putting in enough money for local councils and the national agency to make sure that repairs on motorways and local roads are brought up to standard. We now have a greater crisis than we have seen for some time.

I am afraid that I do not agree with the hon. Gentleman’s analysis. The Government have put a record amount of investment into our roads and rail. As the Chancellor announced in the autumn, there is further money for transport projects in the north. There is £13 billion in total to improve transport across the north of England.

This Government have done nothing to deliver local rail infrastructure in the north-west, which is vital for jobs and the economy. When are they going to invest in decent local rail services, including those used by my constituents from Southport to Manchester? If the Government will not do it, they should stand aside and let us get on with the job.

The Government have been investing more in railways across the country than any Government since Victorian times, including in the north of England. Across the country, the Government have invested £0.25 trillion in infrastructure projects since 2010, 4,500 of which have already been completed.