Economic Growth: South-west — [Albert Owen in the Chair]

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 2:30 pm on 5th February 2019.

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Photo of Matthew Offord Matthew Offord Conservative, Hendon 2:30 pm, 5th February 2019

Chair, you probably wonder why, as the Member of Parliament for Hendon, I am standing in a debate on the south-west. Not only did I grow up in Cornwall; I undertook my PhD in economic development on Cornwall, so I thought I would come along and have a listen. My hon. Friend is entirely correct that the county of Devon in particular is cut off. A major component of Cornwall’s economic development programmes of the 1990s and 2000s was the Actnow project, which was to bring superfast broadband to the whole county. Does he agree that connections are not only physical but include electronic communications, which are able to reduce the peripherality of a county like Cornwall, bringing the markets to the consumers and, indeed, the consumers to the marketplace through technology?