Boris Johnson: Chancellor’s autumn statement will boost London jobs and growth

The Chancellor’s autumn statement will help drive jobs and growth in the capital at a difficult time, says London Mayor Boris Johnson.

He was speaking after George Osborne outlined a package of measures which will mean better rail, roads and river crossings for the capital.

He said: “The big picture is that the Government is using the autumn statement to help London businesses in the drive for jobs and growth. The way that they are going to drive growth is different from getting people into work, not just in the construction industry but in all sorts of associated businesses.

He said: “This huge commitment to London is fantastic news that will significantly boost jobs and growth, keep the capital moving during the downturn and help us address the capacity issues that are critical to it remaining globally competitive. Maintaining London’s position as the motor of the UK economy will return huge revenues to the exchequer that will benefit the whole UK for years to come.

“Most importantly it further unlocks the massive potential of two long neglected areas of the capital in Nine Elms and east London, creating desperately needed jobs and apprenticeships and improving the lives of the thousands of Londoners.”

“This is a terrific settlement which not only delivers immediate support to the economy but also commits to an open debate on airport capacity to secure London’s position as a major international transport hub.

“If you look at the Olympic development, that has had a massive impact on the whole of the UK but that is now beginning to tail off. That is why we have got to do something now because otherwise in 10-15 years London will be straining at the seams.”

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He is pleased at the injection of �130 million from the Government for London’s transport budget which will help keep the January fare rises to six per cent, rather than seven or eight.

The extension of the Northern Line and the creation of two new stations at Vauxhall and Nine Elms can now proceed and deliver an estimated 16,000 new homes and 25,000 new jobs.

London will also gain three new river crossings -one at Dartford, another tunnel at Silvertown and a third at a site to be determined.

Boris said: “This will unlock all the potential of East London and that will have a huge impact on the Docklands. We are already building the Cable Car but it won’t have anywhere near the capacity.

“We have got new �80 million of new rolling stock for the Southern Railway franchise and that will have 130 new carriages.”

Millions will be spent accelerating planned improvements on to junctions 23-27 of the M25, opening up the hard shoulder and increasing traffic flow. The Government will also explore options for tackling Junction 30 of the M25 and pressures on the A13 corridor.

The Oystercard travel card will extend to cover areas outside London to take in more of the South East’s transport network. It will include areas like Guildford

The Government has also shown a commitment to another airport in the Thames Estuary as a way of exploring the capital’s future airport capacity although the Mayor admits they have “a long way to go on that.”