Sir John Armitt has used the first anniversary of the government’s Industrial Strategy to press ministers over increased support for electric vehicles and renewable energy when it unveils its National Infrastructure Strategy next year.
The chairman of the National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) urged ministers to adopt the commission’s proposals, such as supporting electric vehicle take-up and making greater use of renewable energy sources, when it publishes the strategy.
The Treasury announced in last month’s Budget that the infrastructure strategy will be published next year.
The Industrial Strategy was published by the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy one year ago today (27 November).
Sir John welcomed the central role that infrastructure continues to play in the Industrial Strategy and the alignment between its commitment to clean growth and improved productivity and the recommendations in the UK’s first National Infrastructure Assessment, which was produced by the NIC during the summer.
He said: “One year ago, we welcomed that infrastructure had a place at the heart of the government’s Industrial Strategy – with particular focus on delivering low-carbon technologies, improving transport networks and using the latest digital technologies.
“Since then we’ve published the National Infrastructure Assessment, the recommendations from which are in line with these aims and others.
“In particular, we highlight the need to rollout full fibre broadband across the whole country which is already being enacted, making the most of what renewables can offer, and developing the charging network needed to support ever-greater take-up of electric vehicles. We’ve also proposed putting more funding and powers in the hands of city leaders to develop long-term transport plans for their communities.
“By the Industrial Strategy’s next anniversary, ministers will have responded to our recommendations and I look forward to working with them as they develop this over the coming months to ensure the country’s infrastructure needs can be met long into the future.”
Armitt called on utilities and regulators to back the recommendations it has made to government about the investment needed for infrastructure as part of his speech at Utility Week’s Congress event in Birmingham last month.