Delays over replacing £605m EU cash for South Yorkshire ‘another broken Brexit promise’

A Sheffield MP has accused the Government of “another broken Brexit promise” after a consultation on replacing £605m of EU cash for South Yorkshire was repeatedly delayed.

Friday, 5th July 2019, 4:52 pm
Paul Blomfield MP. Picture: Chris Etchells

At a debate in Westminster, Paul Blomfield slammed a lack of progress on how the Shared Prosperity Fund is supposed to work.

South Yorkshire is set to receive £605m EU regional development cash between 2021 and 2027. The Government has said the SPF will replace the money after Brexit.

It was announced in its 2017 manifesto, now, the feeling is that it won’t happen until after the Spending Review, due in autumn, Mr Blomfield said.

He added: “Yet again, as with everything to do with Brexit, the Government is trying to kick the can down the road by postponing the consultation on future funding of our poorer regions.

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“I’m simply asking them to pledge, as they previously promised, that South Yorkshire won’t be worse off.

“Their failure to reply at the third time of asking, and the delayed consultation, suggest they’re going to let us down again. It’s another broken Brexit promise.”

The SPF was mentioned a second time in an industrial strategy white paper in November 2017.

There was a big announcement about it in July 2018 and a consultation was promised by the end of that year.

After that was missed, the Housing Communities and Local Government Committee called for the consultation to begin before the end of April this year, but the Government refused to give anything more on timescale, Mr Blomfield said.