Chambers in new jobs plan

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Plans to identify and develop multi-million pound business projects in Sheffield City Region have been announced - to create jobs and transform the economy.

The Big Investment Project will act as a catalyst to get schemes worth up to £75m off the ground. And all suggestions are welcome.

A board of business leaders will select the best projects which will be pitched to a group of mainly London-based investment fund managers who are set to visit the region early next year.

The region’s four Chambers have joined forces on the BIP scheme because they have fund holders waiting to invest but a lack of “significant, ambitious and commercially sustainable new projects.”

It is endorsed by Lord Bilamoria of Cobra Beer, Lord Wolfson of NEXT and Keith Morgan from the Business Bank based in Sheffield.

David Thurkettle, board member and PwC director, said: “Through the Chambers – the four biggest business representative organisations in the region – we really want to give the economy locally a step change by identifying and providing relevant support to some large, transformational projects.

“The ideas could come from any sector. It is about finding the best ones that could make a real difference.”

Recent economic reports have shown a massive gap in the region’s GVA of £3.2bn annually when compared with other areas.

James Newman, chair of the LEP, said: “We also need to create a larger private sector. Clearly this cannot be achieved by internal growth alone.

“There is a need to encourage a number of large transformational investments addressing gaps.”