CBI urges Osborne to restart road building

Britain’s bosses are urging George Osborne to restart a major road building programme to help construction kick-start economic growth.

Leaders of the CBI want to see the Chancellor introduce road-tolling to attract private investment into new routes and bring forward 24 roads schemes shelved in recent spending reviews.

The CBI believes the cash could be found without derailing the Government’s deficit reduction programme.

The business lobbying group wants to see:

·         Two road-tolling projects financed by the private sector – widening the A14 from Rugby to Felixstowe and improving the A1 in the North East.

·         Bringing ten publicly-funded road projects forward within the existing spending programme, to get shovels in the ground and ease congestion in transport networks. These include projects on the M25, M1 and M60.

·         Re-instating a further 14 major road projects delayed in the 2010 spending review to fill the gap created in the pipeline from 2013, analysing whether or not private sector investment could be used. These include projects on the M1, M6 and A38.

CBI director general John Cridland (pictured) said: “The Government should introduce road-tolling and bring forward ten major road infrastructure projects, getting spades in the ground, improving congestion and creating new jobs.”

The call comes as the CBI revised down its forecast for the UK economy as it now expects GDP growth to be 0.9% in 2011 and 1.2% in 2012, down from 1.3% and 2.2% previously predicted.

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