In the organised chaos of MIPIM it is easy to forget about life and business churning on back in the UK. The heavy grey clouds and the snappy breeze which herald the promised rain today could be a reminder, though, of what’s going on at home. George’s budget will provide a real world underscore to all the talk here in Cannes of boosting productivity, building the Powerhouse etc.
In Manchester we want to see HS3 given a funding commitment, continued support for HS2 and some practical demonstrations of support for the ongoing process of devolution.
Alongside that (if we get that….) we are also likely to see around $4bn of additional public spending cuts. As Joe Anderson (Mayor of Liverpool) said yesterday, investment for in creased productivity can in fact be subverted to bridging the gaps created by those cuts – effectively sticking a handful of grass up the exhaust pipe of the engines for growth we are all taking about here.
So Wednewsday at MIPIM has a mixed and uncertain feel. At the very least the informal Budget Lunch (Arup/ Laing O’Rourke/ Trowers & Hamlins – and several pizzas) will be good craic with good friends.
Hmm, those clouds are thickening and darkening….