This year’s CBI/AECOM Infrastructure Survey makes one thing crystal clear: in the face of uncertainty, businesses want to see infrastructure delivery at the heart of the government’s agenda.
Now in its 7th year, the CBI/ AECOM Infrastructure Survey 2017 provides an overview of business sentiment towards the UK’s overall infrastructure delivery, as well as across a range of sectors. In addition, for the first time, this year’s survey also includes views from the public alongside those of businesses.
The survey, conducted shortly after the General Election, shows firms’ desire for infrastructure to be a key priority in this Parliament, with 96% of businesses seeing it as important to the government’s agenda, of which 55% think it is critical. The past year has seen some welcome progress on delivering the high-quality infrastructure that is fundamental to achieving prosperity and productivity, however the survey shows that a confidence gap remains; only 20% of businesses and 26% of the public are satisfied with the pace of infrastructure delivery, while around three quarters of businesses (74%) and the public (76%) are not confident that infrastructure will improve overall during the course of this Parliament. Maintaining infrastructure’s priority status will, therefore, be crucial if we are to turn momentum into delivery.
This concern, however, must not be confused with pessimism. As highlighted in the report, businesses want to work in partnership with the government to deliver the infrastructure that the UK needs in order to compete globally, raise productivity and living standards at home.