'Golden opportunity' as Labour and the Tories set out their visions for the North

Senior figures from the two main political parties will today address an audience of northern business leaders in Yorkshire and Manchester to set out their party’s approach to the Northern Powerhouse.

In Hull, Chancellor of the Exchequer Sajid Javid, will take part in a Q&A event with northern business leaders, giving an opportunity for the North’s voice to be heard in this election campaign.

While in Manchester Labour’s Rebecca Long-Bailey will set out her party’s plans to a business audience, touching on tackling the inequalities that exist between North and South.

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Their appearances are in response to the challenge laid down by the Northern Powerhouse Partnership (NPP) at the start of the election campaign, who called on senior leaders from each of the main parties to come and speak to the North and address the critical issues that matter to the 15m people living here.

Rebecca Long-Bailey and Sajid Javid. Photos: PA/JPI Media

Henri Murison, Director of the Northern Powerhouse Partnership said: “This election has seen the North come in and out of focus, however, as we start the final week of the campaign major players from both main parties will each speak to a business audience and give their party’s response to the challenge we laid down at the beginning of the campaign.

“This election offers our political parties a golden opportunity no government in living memory has achieved – to rebalance the UK economy, capturing a trillion-pound economic gain for the country over the coming decades.”

Lord O’Neill, Vice-Chair of the Northern Powerhouse Partnership added: “The North needs to be a place of aspiration, confidence and opportunity, to turn back the tide of those left behind wherever they live, town or city, by building a more successful joined up and scaled up economy competing in the global stage and that will improve living standards.

“This is an opportunity for the two main political parties to put some real, credible and affordable commitments on the table. With polling day fast approaching, this is the last chance to truly demonstrate their party’s getting serious about the North, in particular transforming transport, better education and meaningful devolution, as northern voters’ decisions will be what the result will likely rest on.”