UK Spending Review 2020 – A Cicero/AMO overview

Today’s Spending Review concludes a tumultuous year of unprecedented fiscal events, economic intervention, and historic levels of Government borrowing.

Scaled back from an initial multi-year Review, the Chancellor took the opportunity to outline the Government’s three core priorities – jobs, public services and infrastructure. Seeking to steer the Government’s Levelling Up agenda, he announced a new £4 billion Levelling Up fund, allowing local areas to bid for up to £20 million to directly fund local projects. Alongside this, the Government published its long-awaited National Infrastructure Strategy, setting out plans to level up the country and achieve net zero emissions by 2050, as well as plans to establish a new infrastructure bank in the North of England. A new Industrial Strategy will also be published in the new year.

The move to emphasise the importance of the Levelling Up agenda represents as an olive branch to Conservative backbench MPs representing Northern constituencies, many of whom have become increasingly unhappy with the Government’s handling of the COVID-19 crisis and the impact of strict lockdowns on their local areas…

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Lizzy Tomlin

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