Greater Manchester sets out £38.6m of investment to boost jobs, businesses and communities

  • Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) allocated a total of £83.9million from the UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF)
  • Leaders have outlined how £38.6m of the fund will be spent in the city-region, subject to UK government granting funding
  • UKSPF focuses on a number of investment priorities including communities and place, supporting businesses and people and skill
  • Spending will be used to improve high streets, create workspaces for local SMEs, provide support for businesses over winter as well as supporting Greater Manchester’s VCSE sector

GREATER Manchester leaders have set out ambitious investment proposals which aim to improve communities, create new jobs and support businesses to grow in the city-region through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF).

The UKSPF is a fund designed by government to replace the former EU structural funds, with GMCA named as the lead authority for administering the fund in the city-region.

GMCA has been allocated a total of £83.9m of UKSPF, with leaders outlining how the first £38.6m will be invested. A total of £25.3m will be invested in Greater Manchester’s 10 local authorities to support city and town centres, high streets, green space and arts and heritage across GM and £1.6m to support the sustainability of the Greater Manchester VCSE sector. Funding would also be allocated to Greater Manchester Business Growth Hub to support local businesses over the next six months.

GMCA has also agreed to invest £15m in a SME Workspace Fund, which will fund workspaces and support for businesses across Greater Manchester, and would also help spark town centre regeneration.

Councillor David Molyneux, GMCA lead for Resources and Investment, said: “These ambitious proposals, spanning across three years, set out how Greater Manchester will use the UKSPF to seize our opportunities. Our investment plan includes a number of interventions to build places we can be proud of, a vibrant VCSE sector, a high-quality skills offer as well as supporting Greater Manchester’s businesses to grow and increase employment.

“Our proposals include support for our local authorities to improve and animate town centres, help for businesses to grow and thrive, as well as making sure our voluntary sector can build resilience. It is designed to deliver an economy fit for the future, ensuring all our communities will prosper and our city-region is the best place to grow up, get on and grow old.”

Local authorities will also work to ensure the funding is spent in line with Greater Manchester’s ambition to reach net zero by 2038 and tackle inequalities in the city-region, in line with the Greater Manchester Strategy.

GMCA is expecting government approval of the Greater Manchester UKSPF Investment Plans from October 2022 onwards.  

Earlier this year, GMCA agreed the UKSPF Multiply programme which will make £14.3m of additional UKSPF available to invest in adult numeracy skills across Greater Manchester over the next two-and-a-half years.

Article Published: 28/10/2022 12:14 PM