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SEMLEPs Ann Limb meets PM Theresa May at first council of Local Enterprise Partnership Chairs at Downing Street

20 June 2018

Prime Minister Theresa May and SEMLEP Chair Dr Ann Limb CBE DL

Yesterday (19 June), the Prime Minister met with the leaders of England’s Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) to celebrate our achievements to date and to map out key areas for cooperation under the UK’s Modern Industrial Strategy.

This was the first meeting of the Prime Minister’s Council of LEP Chairs, made up of business leaders representing the 38 Partnerships. Talks focussed on where LEPs carry maximum impact: delivering the objectives of the Industrial Strategy in local areas, and investing in the skills people and businesses need.

 

Welcoming the Council of LEP Chairs, Prime Minister Theresa May said:

“Local Enterprise Partnerships play a vital role in supporting businesses and innovation across England. LEPs are developing skills, delivering infrastructure, and securing investment.

“That’s why our Modern Industrial Strategy is clear that they must continue to play a crucial role in our plans to deliver further growth in local economies.

"Today’s first meeting of the Council marks a milestone in this partnership. By working even more closely together, we will continue to maximise our efforts in creating jobs, growth and investment right across the country, delivering long-term, meaningful results for local communities.” 

 This is part of an ongoing dialogue between LEPs and government as we help build an ambitious programme for long-term economic growth. Our strong partnerships of private and public sector leaders and track record of delivery, mean we have an exciting opportunity to help the government build an economy that works for everyone, no matter where they live.

SEMLEP Chair, Dr Ann Limb CBE DL said:

 “Today was an opportunity for business leaders to sit down directly with the Prime Minister and identify the key action areas LEPs can help government with, and highlight current achievements. LEPs are playing a crucial role in ensuring that the UK remains at the forefront of innovation.

 “The government’s commitment to LEPs will further empower us to work with businesses to exploit our local strengths to deliver a strong and successful economy for the future.”

During the meeting, Dr Ann Limb was asked to give the Prime Minister regional insight into skills and labour market issues faced by businesses. Ann highlighted the best practice from SEMLEP’s Growing People Programme which is based on an employer-led approach to build a talent pipeline to create a workforce with the skills our modern economy will require in the future.

Ann said:

“LEPs are doing really important work to address the skills shortages businesses report. This requires effective and on-going engagement between businesses and education institutions to develop a pipeline of talented, high calibre people.”  

During the meeting, LEPs reinforced our commitment to help deliver a national Modern Industrial Strategy, using our strengths and expertise to lead local strategies for economic growth and partner more effectively with local government.

The Council of Local Enterprise Partnership Chairs was announced in the 2017 Industrial Strategy White Paper as a new forum for LEP business leaders to help shape national policy decisions and ensure closer cooperation with the Government on Industrial Strategy objectives.


Central photo: Christine Gaskell (Chair, Cheshire & Warrington LEP), Prime Minister Theresa May, Dr Ann Limb CBE DL (Chair, South East Midlands LEP) 

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