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Part of High Speed Rail (West Midlands - Crewe) Bill – in the House of Commons at 7:15 pm on 15th July 2019.

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Photo of Nusrat Ghani Nusrat Ghani Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport), Assistant Whip (HM Treasury) 7:15 pm, 15th July 2019

The people I mentioned have all made it very clear that they do not think it is a waste of money. I can confirm for my hon. Friend and others that there is only one budget for HS2, and it is £55.7 billion. The bit we are talking about today, phase 2a, is £3.5 billion. The benefit-cost ratio is £2.30 for every £1 spent. There will always be people—we have heard some today—who will never support the project because of its impact in their constituencies, but we must not deny the positive impact it will have on the whole of our country.

I want to take a moment to refer to some of the contributions to the debate before I get to the new clauses. I know that hon. Members will be listening very closely to the words I use. My hon. Friend Jeremy Lefroy has been an incredibly passionate advocate for his constituency. I wanted to mention his staff member who has spent years dealing with constituent complaints, but I forgot his name.