Prime Minister sets out vision to Level Up the UK: 15 July 2021
PM Boris Johnson will set out his vision for levelling up the United Kingdom in a speech in the West Midlands today
The Prime Minister will set out his vision for levelling up the United Kingdom in a speech in the West Midlands today.
The Prime Minister is expected to say that “we will have made progress in Levelling Up when we have begun to raise living standards spread opportunity, improved our public services and restored people’s sense of pride in their community”, particularly in places that have felt left behind for decades.
The Prime Minister will make clear that this agenda will also help to relieve pressure in the parts of the UK which are ‘over-heating’.
Speaking about the government’s approach, the Prime Minister will say:
“It is vital to understand the difference between this project and levelling down.
“We don’t want to decapitate the tall poppies. We don’t think you can make the poor parts of the country richer by making the rich parts poorer…”
The Prime Minister will argue that previous governments focused investment too much in “areas where house prices are already sky high and where transport is already congested…”
He will argue that “by turbo charging those areas - especially in London and the south east – you drive prices even higher and you force more and more people to move to the same expensive areas…
…and the result is that their commutes are longer, their trains are more crowded, they have less time with their kids. They worry at the same time that the younger generation won’t be able to get a home and that their leafy suburb or village will be engulfed by new housing development but without the infrastructure to go with it.”
The Prime Minister will emphasise that “levelling up is not a jam-spreading operation. It’s not robbing Peter to pay Paul. It’s not zero sum, it’s win win.”
He will say that the UK’s successful vaccine roll-out will help fuel a strong economic recovery in the year ahead, highlighting that: “Levelling up can only be achieved with a strong and dynamic wealth creating economy. There must be a catalytic role for government, and government is there to provide a strategic lead, but that requires consistency – not chopping and changing.”
The Prime Minister makes this speech ahead of the Levelling Up White Paper that will be published in the Autumn.