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Revealed: Infra Commission's £900bn public spending plan

The government’s infrastructure advisory body today called for £30bn to be invested every year in improving UK infrastructure through to 2050.

The National Infrastructure Commission urged the government to pledge at least 1.2 per cent of the country’s annual GDP to infrastructure spending between 2020 and 2050 – an annual average of £29.8bn.

The calls come as part of the NIC’s National Infrastructure Assessment report, the first time the UK has produced a 30-year forecast of the UK’s infrastructure needs.

As part of the report, the infrastructure body has provided detailed recommendations of how much the government should spend on specific infrastructure each year (see table).

The table covers the maintenance and renewals of existing infrastructure in the country, development of new schemes, and the construction of capital projects such as Northern Powerhouse Rail and Crossrail 2.

The NIC suggests spending around £200m each a year on Crossrail 2 and Northern Powerhouse Rail between 2020 and 2025. This would then rise to £2.9bn and £1.7bn a year respectively between 2030 and 2035.

The NIC has said that after 2030 the government’s infrastructure investment profile should move away from major cross-country enhancement schemes towards more intercity projects.

This is reflected in the £2.4bn annual spend suggested for major urban projects in the five years after 2030, up from £400m set aside for 2025 to 2030.

NIC annual infrastructure spending proposals

Sector2020-252025-302030-352035-402040-452045-50
HS2 £4.5bn £3.9bn £900m      
Crossrail 2 £200m £2.2bn £2.9bn      
Northern Powerhouse Rail £200m £1.1bn £1.7bn £1.8bn    
Network Rail £6.1bn £6.1bn        
Highways England £4.3bn £3.2bn        
Strategic transport*     £10.5bn £11.4bn £11.2bn £11.6bn
Devolved cities transport £3.3bn £3.6bn £4.6bn £5.4bn £6.1bn £6.8bn
Transport for London £2.6bn £2.9bn £2.2bn £2bn £2.2bn £2.4bn
Urban major transport projects £500m £400m £2.4bn £3.1bn £3.5bn £3.9bn
Non-urban local transport £2.7bn £2.9bn £3.4bn £3.8bn £4.2bn £4.7bn
Local roads backlog   £500m £500m      
Housing infrastructure fund (transport) £500m £200m £200m £200m £200m £200m
Energy efficiency £100m £300m £300m £100m    
EV Charging £2m**          
Rural fibre broadband £400m £300m £100m      
Waste £600m £500m £500m £500m £500m £500m
Flood resilience £600m £700m £900m £1.3bn £1.3bn £1.3bn
Studies contingency £300m £400m £400m £400m £400m £400m
TOTAL ANNUAL EXPENDITURE£26.9bn£29.2bn£31.5bn£30bn£29.6bn£31.8bn
AS % of GDP 1.2% 1.2% 1.2% 1.0% 0.9%% 0.8%%
*combined allocation for road and rail | **£10m funding in 2020/21  

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