The North East England Chamber of Commerce has set out its campaign to build a Stronger North East in 2018, creating new jobs and attracting investment.
Chamber members have identified the political decisions they believe would have the biggest positive impact on economic growth in the next 12 months.
These include fair funding and further devolution to the North East, investment in key infrastructure and support to grow the region’s exports.
John McCabe, Chamber president, said: “We know the North East is a great place to do business, but it can also be so much better.
“Our businesses have the right assets, attitude and abilities to make a far bigger contribution to the national economy, but are all too often prevented from doing so – that’s why the Chamber is campaigning for a Stronger North East.”
Its plan for the year ahead also involves urging businesses and local authorities to work together to build a clear and consistent set of investment priorities, building on devolved powers.
It will continue to champion the region’s exporters; insisting on a positive trade deal with the EU and demanding much more support for new and existing exporters to grow the global North East reputation.
The Stronger North East campaign is calling for major investment in the regional rail network on schemes such as the Newcastle to Northumberland line, as well as an increase in the North East’s energy generating capacity.
In addition, the Chamber will continue to urge the creation of more high quality apprenticeships in the region.