Mayor calls on Government to replace £600m of EU funds

01 February 2017

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, is today calling on Government to make an urgent decision on how more than £600m of crucial funds that London receives from the European Union will be replaced in the aftermath of Brexit.

The Mayor will today chair the first meeting of the London Economic Action Partnership (LEAP), which is responsible for delivering economic growth across the capital and ensuring that opportunities are open to all Londoners.

LEAP, London’s local enterprise partnership, oversees the investment of £600m from the European Structural and Investment Funds into skills, employment and enterprise initiatives across the capital. However, in the aftermath of Brexit, the future of this crucial funding is now in doubt.

At today’s meeting at City Hall, the Mayor and LEAP board members, comprising representatives of London Councils and business leaders from across all the city’s main sectors, will call on the Government to make it clear how it will replace this funding and request that ministers devolve these replacements funds to London, so they can be used most effectively to boost the capital’s economic prosperity.

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “Without this funding, many key schemes - which currently benefit Londoners and our economy - would simply not be possible. That’s why it’s so concerning that in the aftermath of Brexit, the future of this vital investment is now in doubt.

"So I’m calling on the Government to make an urgent decision on how it will replace this investment and ensure the successor funding streams are devolved to London so that we can spend the money where it’s needed - delivering more opportunities for Londoners.

“This is crucial because as we work to mitigate against the potential negative impacts of Brexit, these funding streams will form a part of a wider approach to devolution that will be pivotal to London’s industrial strategy and success over the decades ahead.”

Today’s LEAP meeting will look at many of the key infrastructure challenges facing our city. It will also provide strategic oversight of the Royal Docks Enterprise Zone, which has the potential to deliver up to 40,000 jobs and 4,000 homes in east London.

AT today’s meeting, the LEAP will also agree to work in partnership with the London Borough of Newham to invest up to £380m in order to accelerate delivery of this project which will create a new business district for London.

This money will pay for essential infrastructure, employment programmes and activity to increase the cultural offer within the Royal Docks.

Newham Mayor, Sir Robin Wales, said: "This investment in the Royal Docks, to add to the private investment coming along, will speed up the pace of change and deliver jobs, homes and infrastructure, recreating a vibrant commercial district for London. London is moving East and this genuine partnership between LEAP and Newham will mark a new era for London's economic growth for today's and future generations."

Notes to editors

The London Economic Action Partnership replaces the previous London Enterprise Panel. LEAP brings entrepreneurs and business together with the Mayoralty and London Councils to identify strategic actions to support and lead economic growth and job creation in the capital.

It is Chaired by the Mayor, with the Deputy Mayor for Business, Rajesh Agrawal, taking on the role of Co-Deputy Chair alongside another Co-Deputy from the business community. The Deputy Mayor for Planning, Regeneration and Skills, Jules Pipe, also sits on the board, with the remaining members drawn from the London boroughs and businesses. There is also a new place for a trade union representative.

The eight new business members – half of whom are women – bring a broad range of expertise in economic development as well as significant experience covering sectors from innovative tech start-ups to high-street retail, commercial land owners and creative industry.

The new Board also has a strengthened role in supporting the Mayor’s statutory Economic Development Strategy as well as providing a powerful advocacy and lobbying voice to help boost jobs and support economic growth in the capital.

Full details of membership of the LEAP Board are available here:https://lep.london/about/members