A commitment by the Government to significant levels of investment into the country’s infrastructure and public services has been welcomed by the NFU.
Union Vice President, Stuart Roberts, said the investment promise made by Chancellor Savid Javid to the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester would help ‘equip’ farming businesses and rural communities, giving them improved connectivity and other services, which are so desperately needed.
The Union’ upbeat response followed the Chancellor’s announcement of new investment in roads, bus services, and broadband in what he called an ‘infrastructure revolution’.
The package he outlined included £5bn to support the roll-out of full fibre, 5G and other gigabit capable networks to the hardest to reach 20% of the country – upping the earlier target of 10%.
Elsewhere, there will be £25bn for local road improvements and upgrades including work to complete the dualling of the A66 Trans-Pennine expressway from Scotch Corner to Penrith, the A46 Newark bypass and construction of the A428 in Cambridgeshire and Bedfordshire.
The Chancellor also committed £220m for bus services across England to include new ‘superbus’ networks and the expansion of a fleet of low emission buses.
“Issues such as poor provision of broadband and mobile coverage, lack of public transport and a need for an improved transport network are increasing priorities that impact on farming families and their businesses,” said Mr Roberts (pictured above).
“With the industry facing so much uncertainty, it is clear that farmers need as much support from Government as possible to improve productivity, maintain business resilience and ensure they can remain competitive on the global market.”