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Economy Economy

Invest £250 million in skills by the end of 2020

Last updated: 01:40pm 11 December 2019

This will include £740 million of digital infrastructure investment, the largest investment in railways since Victorian times, £1.1 billion to improve local transport and £250 million in skills by the end of 2020.

Conservative Party Manifesto 2017, p.20

Our verdict

In the context of industrial strategy, the 2017 manifesto committed the government to provide appropriate funding to grow productivity, in the form of a £23 billion National Productivity Investment Fund. This is a pledge to allocate £250 million from that fund to skills by 2020.

The 2018 Autumn Budget provided a breakdown of expenditure under the National Productivity Investment Fund (NPIF). From 2017 to 2018, spending totalled £4.8 billion, with £1.2 billion for research and development.

More specifically, in July 2018 a report from the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) showed that, from 2017 to 2019, under the NPIF the government allocated £177 million to skills (“talent”), including funding for fellowships and new PhDs.

We have evidence that the government was in the process of rolling out the promised £250 million funding for skills. At the end of its time in office, however, we do not have updated figures to demonstrate that the £250 million investment amount was achieved. As a result, this policy will remain ‘in progress’.

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