Speaking after the Autumn Statement, Peter Pawsey, the Executive Chair of the Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “The Autumn Statement has shown a focus on business growth, for example, with smaller businesses being able to access finance and support for exporting.
“In particular, the Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership welcomes the removal of National Insurance contributions for apprentices. This will help employers to increase further the number of excellent opportunities available with the number of young people participating in an apprenticeship programme locally having grown fourfold in the last three years and now stands at over 10,000.
“Worcestershire’s businesses will benefit from the investment in Worcester that will protect homes and businesses and keep the County moving during flooding, this being in addition to the road improvements included in our Growth deal for the alleviation of flooded highways. Linked to the various major improvements announced for the M5, these developments will enhance Worcestershire’s connectivity further and open up the Worcester Technology Park, whilst improvements to the A417 near the Air Balloon in Gloucestershire will significantly reduce journey times to and from South Worcestershire.
“Worcestershire is already delivering against key infrastructure programmes for the Growth Deal and we will continue to work with the County Council and other organisations to strive for a share of additional funding for schemes not already included, such as the Carrington Bridge, as we look towards the second part of the Growth Deal which the Chancellor has now announced.”