Laura Sharman 27 November 2019

Regional inequality in UK is worst than comparable countries, says think tank

Regional inequalities in the UK are ‘far worse than in any comparable country’, a think tank has warned today.

A new report from the Institute for Public Policy Research North found the UK is more regionally divided in terms of productivity, income and health than any comparable advanced economy.

IPPR North also warned that these divides defy ‘simplistic’ interpretation such as the ‘North-South divide’ that omits high poverty in London and the South West.

The report claims centralised governance is a major cause of economic problems in all regions, and calls for further devolution to tackle regional inequalities.

It states: ‘The UK is the most centralised country of its size in the developed world and this has led to many flawed policy choices: instead of developing sustainable and resilient economies across the country, central government has prioritised short-term economic returns in London and the South East – which often fail to benefit even the people living in these regions, let alone those living in other parts of the country.’

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