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Nadhim Zahawi: British Islands will be at the heart of levelling up

Nadhim Zahawi: British Islands will be at the heart of levelling up

The Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster has been speaking ahead of the first Islands Forum

Island communities will be at the heart of the UK Government’s levelling up agenda, the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster has said.

Nadhim Zahawi will chair the first Islands Forum on Orkney on Wednesday, bringing together leaders from islands across the UK including the Isles of Scilly and the Isle of Wight, Rathlin off the coast of Northern Ireland, Anglesey and the Scottish islands.

As Cabinet Office minister for intergovernmental relations, Mr Zahawi will tell leaders that the forum will be a place to air issues.

“Quite simply the goal is this. We want to do more to work with all levels of government, including local leaders, to deliver the best for citizens,” he is expected to say.

“Our islands will be at heart of levelling up, so that opportunity and prosperity – like our inherent talents – extend to every part of the UK.

“And it will help to unlock the huge potential, spread the terrific talent and channel more of the inward investment that is going in from Shetland to the Scillies.”

The minister will also stress the importance in the forum becoming a place where ideas can be shared between island communities.

“This Islands Forum can become a great incubator of innovation, as islands share their successes, making the most of their common experience, tailoring what works and playing to their collective strengths,” he will say.

Ahead of the meeting, Scotland Office minister Malcolm Offord said: “We want to talk with our crucial island communities to understand how best they can flourish and make the most of the opportunities presented by, for instance, their renewable energy resources.

“The new Forum is a tremendous opportunity to draw on the collective expertise of people from islands right around the UK coastline, from Scilly to Shetland, to share both solutions to challenges and best practice. I look forward to what I am sure will be a highly productive event.”

Content provided by Radio NewsHub. Originally published on 2022-09-27 22:35:00.

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