WMCA welcomes Prime Minister’s praise for West Midlands

The West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) chairman has today welcomed warm words of support for the region from the Prime Minister.

WMCA chairman Cllr Bob Sleigh was responding to an article<http://www.birminghammail.co.uk/news/midlands-news/booming-brum-powering-up-well-11763610> in a key Midland newspaper by PM Theresa May.

Mrs May said the Midlands Engine would "unleash the region's full potential”, adding: "It starts with ensuring the Midlands takes full advantage of its position at the crossroads of this country, so we can attract more investment.”

Cllr Sleigh said her message showed that the region was right on track to be a key player in rebalancing the UK economy.

He said: “This is a significant announcement by the Prime Minister about rebalancing our whole economy.

“I am delighted that she recognises the value of what we are already doing here with the Midlands Engine – and the combined authority is key to forming and delivering that agenda.

“The unified, co-ordinated approach we are taking, particularly to economic growth, is key to this process going forward and delivering on some of our big ticket goals such as transport.”

The West Midlands Combined Authority will have control over issues including transport and encouraging business innovation – decisions that had previously been made in Whitehall.

In May, the people of the West Midlands will get to vote for a new mayor<https://westmidlandscombinedauthority.org.uk/mayoral-wmca-consultation/> to preside over the region, and chair this powerful new organisation.

The agreement with government will see it make an annual contribution worth £40 million for 30 years to support an overall investment package that will unlock £8 billion, alongside the creation of up to half a million jobs.

 Further Information:

  • The West Midlands Devolution Deal was signed on 17th November 2015
  • The West Midlands Combined Authority was created on 17th June 2016 – it comprises Birmingham City Council, City of Wolverhampton Council, Coventry Council, Dudley Council, Solihull Council, Sandwell Council and Walsall Council.
  • Subject to Parliamentary processes, the new mayor for the West Midlands will be elected in May 2017

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