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National Infrastructure

Treasury – in the House of Commons on 11th February 2020.

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Photo of Paul Holmes Paul Holmes Conservative, Eastleigh

What steps he is taking to improve the UK's national infrastructure.

Photo of Sajid Javid Sajid Javid The Chancellor of the Exchequer

Infra- structure is a top priority for the Government, which is why we are publishing the national infrastructure strategy alongside the Budget. It will set out further details of the Government’s plan to increase investment to transform the UK’s infrastructure.

Photo of Paul Holmes Paul Holmes Conservative, Eastleigh

I welcome my right hon. Friend’s commitment to vital national infrastructure, but does he agree that bespoke local infrastructure projects benefit the national infrastructure network by increasing connectivity? An example is the much-needed Chickenhall Lane road link in Eastleigh, for which my constituents have been waiting for over 20 years.

Photo of Sajid Javid Sajid Javid The Chancellor of the Exchequer

My hon. Friend is right. Local transport is the backbone of our community, which is why hopefully a welcome announcement will be made today on buses and cycling—a new £5 billion package on local transport. There is also the £150 million fund for smaller projects to deal with congestion hotspots. I would be pleased to consider the Chickenhall Lane link road in the next available competition.

Photo of Nick Smith Nick Smith Labour, Blaenau Gwent

Blaenau Gwent needs investment in the Ebbw Vale to Cardiff train line for extra services. The shared prosperity fund could be a crucial route to providing that. When will the fund be ready to support infrastructure projects in our eastern valleys?

Photo of Sajid Javid Sajid Javid The Chancellor of the Exchequer

The hon. Gentleman will know that, as we transition from EU structural funds to the shared prosperity fund, it will be important that we set out exactly how that will work. With reference to his question, it means that the Welsh Government will have to work closely with us to see how we can use that for infrastructure projects in Wales.

Photo of Claire Coutinho Claire Coutinho Conservative, East Surrey

Thanks to heavy usage by HGVs, Surrey is sometimes called the pothole capital of England. What steps is the Department taking to invest in tackling potholes nationally, which I am very keen to see in East Surrey?

Photo of Sajid Javid Sajid Javid The Chancellor of the Exchequer

My hon. Friend raises an important issue that affects many communities. All our constituents would say that the number of potholes is unbearable nowadays, which is why we made it clear in our manifesto that we will have the largest fund ever put in place by any Government to tackle potholes, with more details at the Budget.