Have your say on Gloucestershire’s economy
By Bethany Winter | 1st August 2023
Residents and businesses are being invited to give their views on what priorities they would like to see included in a new economic strategy for Gloucestershire.
It covers both priorities for the next five years and longer-term up to 2050. A Gloucestershire Economic Strategy public engagement document has been produced by the county council and GFirst Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), to provide an overview of the county's economy and develop priorities and actions.
A seven-week public engagement period, giving residents the chance to comment on the draft proposals, began on Monday, July 31, and ends on September 15, 2023.
You can share your views by taking part in a survey here: https://haveyoursaygloucestershire.uk.engagementhq.com/economic-strategy-engagement
All feedback will be considered when shaping the final strategy, which is due to be brought back to the county council's cabinet for approval in early 2024.
It will replace the current countywide economic strategy which was produced in 2018 and Gloucestershire's draft Local Industrial Strategy that was never formally approved by Government due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Key topics and priorities which feature in the new strategy include:
• Zero carbon - the move towards a net carbon zero economy is one of the main principles of the economic strategy
• Inclusive growth - to ensure every resident and business has equal access to opportunities
• Skills and employment - drawing on the existing work of the county council, the district councils and LEP to reduce skills gaps in the workforce
Other key areas include supporting sustainable growth, ensuring businesses have the support they need, securing inward investment and improving access and availability to digital technology.
The transition to the green economy is an urgent priority for Gloucestershire and the aim is to meet the 2045 net zero emissions target while promoting economic growth.
The core proposals outlined in the public engagement document include:
• Being a vibrant, successful county where communities and businesses flourish by taking advantage of Gloucestershire's location, characteristics and its economic strengths;
• Being an area that attracts high-value investment from the UK and abroad, through a coordinated effort from local partners such as the Western Gateway;
• Being renowned for developing industry-changing technology in agri-tech, sustainable aviation and advanced manufacturing;
• Maintaining our outstanding landscapes and becoming a leader in biodiversity recovery and conservation.
Cllr Mark Hawthorne, leader of Gloucestershire County Council, said: "The proposals will support communities so all individuals and businesses can succeed, by ensuring that every resident has access to quality education, training, and employment, in a safe, healthy and sustainable environment. It also paves the way towards a sustainable future, facilitating a smooth transition to a flourishing green economy.
"I would encourage residents and businesses to have their say on the draft proposals by taking part in the survey."
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