William Eichler 15 December 2022

London losing out on levelling up funding, says Mayor

London losing out on levelling up funding, says Mayor image
Image: lev radin / Shutterstock.com.

London is losing out on hundreds of millions of pounds of levelling up funding despite having some of the most deprived areas in the country, Mayor Sadiq Khan says.

Organisations in London can apply for a share of £30m targeted to support small businesses, in the first phase of the Government’s new UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF).

However, Mayor Khan believes this national fund should be doubled in size.

The UKSPF replaces funding that the UK used to receive from the European Union before Brexit. The fund is an important part of the Government’s ‘Levelling Up’ agenda.

But despite being home to some of the most deprived parts of the UK, London is only eligible to receive a total of £144m from the UKSPF over three years, out of a national total pot of £2.6bn. This equates to less than half the size of the EU funding it was intended to replace.

Mayor Khan also said that of the 11 major Government regional funding initiatives designed to support levelling up, London receives the lowest amount – just £76 per person, compared to the England average of £384 per person.

‘I am pleased that organisations in London will today be able to apply for funding – but the reality is that the capital’s needs far exceed what it is receiving from Government,’ Mayor Khan said.

‘I am determined that London plays its part in helping to level up parts of the country that have been left behind for too long.

‘But if the Government really wants to level up, it needs to recognise that London has some of the most deprived communities in the country and also needs robust support and investment to deliver a more equal society.

‘London is the driver of the UK economy – but the funding allocated to the capital does not reflect the high levels of unemployment and child poverty that continue to exist in many areas here.

‘All we want is a fair share of funding for London, so we can continue to reduce the capital’s own substantial inequalities and in turn boost prosperity across the country.’

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