CBI: Extending HS2 to North will drive growth and create jobs
Businesses cannot wait for existing rail lines to reach full capacity
'HS2 cannot be built in isolation so we need sustained, additional capital investment in existing road and rail networks to meet increased demand'- John Cridland
The CBI has responded to the Government’s announcement on extending the planned High Speed 2 rail line to Manchester and Leeds.
John Cridland, CBI Director-General, said:
“We cannot sit on our hands when the West Coast Main Line is set to reach full capacity by the 2020s and freight will be squeezed.
“Extending HS2 to the North is the project’s big prize. It will boost the economic potential of some of our biggest cities, driving growth and creating jobs across the country. This is the same bold, long-term thinking that helped the Victorians build our original network.
“HS2 cannot be built in isolation so we need sustained, additional capital investment in existing road and rail networks to meet increased demand. Ministers must work hard to secure real consensus on the route, to avoid the project being hit by years of delays.”
The CBI/KPMG Infrastructure Survey 2012 showed a balance of +64% businesses said HS2 would have a positive impact on private sector growth.
The survey also showed that, of firms that said rail freight was important to their business, 61% are dissatisfied with the UK’s current domestic links.