Research released by Onward demonstrates how much accumulated decision-making the Chancellor will need to unwind if wants to make a dent on regional imbalances, writes James Blagden:
”There is a clear correlation between higher levels of GDP per capita and more balanced growth across a country. Among the G20, there are no large countries which are more regionally imbalanced than the UK and also richer than the UK. The reasons for this are straightforward: more balanced economies are less likely to be misallocating resources, causing parts of the country to experience shortages in skills or other inputs, while others overheat.
The productivity gap between London and the South East, on one hand, and the rest of the country, on the other, has widened since the turn of this century and became entrenched after the Financial Crisis. To give an example of just how vast this gap now is: in real terms, every English region (apart from the South East) is currently less productive than London was 20 years ago. In Yorkshire, gross value added per hour is £4.50 lower than London in 1998.”
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