Elizabeth Taylor, Chief Executive ERSA said:
“Today was the day we expected to learn more about UKSPF through the Spending Review, so we find ourselves disappointed that there is no real detail. What we have learnt is that the Devolved Administrations will have a place within the governance structures for the UK Shared Prosperity Fund. The Chancellor promised Shared Prosperity Fund would match EU structural funding of £1.5bn a year but it is hard to envisage how the UKSPF commitment will match estimated EU funding of £11bn over 2021-27, if in 2022-23 it is £0.4bn and 2023-24 £0.7bn, we are waiting for 2024-25.
“We also understand that UKSPF will fund Multiply , the new UK-wide programme to equip hundreds of thousands of adults with functional numeracy skills to improve their employment prospects, this is a welcome initiative.
“Evidence shows that we need engagement, participation and employment support as a central feature of UKSPF. There are high numbers in employment, but there is a skills and labour shortage. Programmes and projects funded by European Funding have engaged with people reluctant to be active job seekers, have removed barriers, enhanced skills and responded at the local level needed for place based levelling up. We still hope to see this through UKSPF. We will continue to make the case for employment provisions within UKSPF.”
Register for ERSA’s CPIN on 2 November at 10am, for further analysis of the spending review and implications for our sector here.