The government’s Regional Growth Fund (RGF) has now put over £1bn in the hands of businesses, which in turn has leveraged nearly £3bn in private sector investment, Business Secretary Vince Cable announced yesterday.
Companies in the North West have received £206.2m resulting in a further £543.6m invested by private firms.
The fund has also directly created and safeguarded over 100,000 jobs in the English regions to date. The news means the fund is now on track to deliver the 573,000 jobs it is projected to deliver by the end of the decade.
Business Secretary Vince Cable said: “The government’s Regional Growth Fund which supports job creation outside London, has secured over £750m in the North West and £4bn in investment in the UK as a whole. This is a great achievement, helping workers and businesses across the country to be the engines of growth in the recovery.
“The Regional Growth Fund is playing a pivotal role in developing innovative technologies and giving businesses the confidence to invest in the North West and providing highly skilled, long term jobs right across the country.”
Universities, Science & Cities Minister Greg Clark said: “The government is supporting local businesses and enterprise, helping them to create jobs and grow.
“Through RGF we have invested in 500 companies in the North West to help them expand and create long-term, highly-skilled employment.”
On top of these regional figures, the North West has received a proportion of the £811m private investment leveraged by nationally run RGF programmes which have provided grants to over 2,600 businesses.
Every recipient of RGF support agrees a grant offer letter. This sets out what the project/programme will achieve, in terms of jobs and investment. Where milestones are not hit, payment is withheld.
To monitor compliance against the offer letter, every project/programme is assigned a Monitoring Officer, who meets with them quarterly to review progress. This includes checking paperwork to ensure the job delivery and investment are valid. In addition, every scheme must submit to us an annual report from an independent accountant to verify the outputs are genuine. So these 100,000 jobs have been verified by our monitoring officers.
RGF is a flexible and competitive fund operating across England. It supports projects and programmes that are using private sector investment to create economic growth and sustainable employment.