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LEP consults on framework for a Local Industrial Strategy to focus on the challenge of driving up productivity

At a time of such uncertainty there is much expectation of economic policy. As the advocate for the area, Thames Valley Berkshire LEP has a responsibility to respond to this and shape a Local Industrial Strategy for Berkshire, the BLIS. The LEP has worked with numerous partners on this since early 2018 and is now publishing a BLIS Framework Document.

The Document sets out five priorities and poses a number of questions to ensure that it meets the needs of local stakeholders. Its publication marks a key milestone in the process of developing the BLIS, ahead of ‘co-design’ with government, as all Local Industrial Strategies must eventually be co-owned to ensure they contribute to the national Industrial Strategy published in late 2017. This tasked all 38 LEPs in the country with leading the development of a Local Industrial Strategy for their respective areas, to raise productivity and ensure that local economic assets contribute even more to the national economy.

The BLIS Framework Document is a working version of the strategy element of the BLIS. It will be supported by other documents – notably a full evidence base; a spatial economic narrative; and a set of implementation plans as well as the LEP’s extant Sector Propositions and Business in Berkshire publication of 2018.

The LEP is seeking the endorsement of key stakeholders in Thames Valley Berkshire for the Framework Document, as well as input into its Chapter 6 – vision, strategy and priorities. The Document therefore poses a number of short questions to enable individuals and organisations to comment. The closing date for responses is midday on Friday 21 June 2019.

Peter Read, Chair of Thames Valley Berkshire LEP says, “Four years into implementing our Strategic Economic Plan, the LEP is leading on the development of Berkshire’s Local Industrial Strategy. Substantive work has been done, with many partners and stakeholders already consulted. Now we are asking for more input and importantly, the support of the business, local authority, community and education sectors to enable us to move forward and work with central government on finalising the BLIS. Despite this time of great uncertainty and numerous distractions, we encourage everyone to respond to the questions and help us shape an economy that Thames Valley Berkshire, its residents, businesses and future workforce deserve.”

Download the BLIS Framework Document here and submit your answers by emailing BLIS@thamesvalleyberkshire.co.uk

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