Project fund action aired

The UK's first national infrastructure plan has been welcomed as providing clarity and political commitment to infrastructure development.

The plan, produced by government advisory body Infrastructure UK, sets out ways to tackle barriers to efficient delivery. It explores areas where the government "can take broader action to facilitate the development of infrastructure in both the public and private sectors".

Institution of Civil Engineers director-general Tom Foulkes said: "This long-term plan shows strong political commitment. It also paves the way for the private sector to take a lead in delivering sustainable funding for future infrastructure."

Berwin Leighton Paisner partner Mark Richards added that a focus on securing investment that encourages growth is the way forward. "The question is how the government will encourage investment by the private sector," he said.

The plan confirms that the localism bill will be introduced next month. Details of the transition to the major infrastructure planning unit and an updated timetable for the remaining national policy statements are promised by the year end.

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