Thursday, 17 April 2014

Housing key for northern economic growth

Shadow housing minister Jack Dromey has said that a new report into the impact of housing on the economy in the north of England shows the value of the sector to economic recovery.

The report by Sheffield Hallam University, commissioned by the Northern Housing Consortium, found that the sector was responsible for sustaining 116,000 full-time jobs.

It further found that housing contributed more than £10 billion annually to the northern economy, with a further £4.6 billion coming from ‘gross added value’ through such things as repairs and maintenance spending or staff wages.

Ahead of the launch of the report at the House of Commons yesterday (Tuesday), Mr Dromey said: ‘From the depression in the 1930s, through rebuilding Britain out of the ashes of war to the action taken by a Labour government in 2008 to get Britain building, house building has always been central to economic recovery.

‘This powerful report demonstrates the importance of investment in house building and how housing organisations can be an engine for homes, jobs and growth.’

The report also found that every £1 million of government investment in northern housing creates 51 new jobs.

Jo Boaden, chief executive of the NHC, said: ‘Housing organisations already employ as many people in the north as car manufacturing and contact centres combined. The outcome of this study show that housing organisations really are local engines for growth and are capable of generating and sustaining wide economic growth, if supported and funded appropriately.’

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