Coronavirus Economic Recovery Task Force launched

Published: 28 April 2020

Council House at night

A task force group has been formed by Derby City Council to lead Derby’s economic recovery from the effects of the coronavirus crisis.

The group will work together to understand the economic impacts facing Derby, and assess what businesses, sectors and investments are likely to be hardest hit by the coronavirus pandemic; partnering with local agencies to offer short-term support, such as identifying opportunities for local contract sourcing, and sign-posting jobs and training options for displaced employees.

The group will be supporting investors with existing planned developments in the city to ensure those schemes are successfully delivered. Derby’s City Centre Masterplan will also be revised, taking into account new commercial realities and changed priorities, to ensure Derby is well-placed to benefit from the economic bounce-back over the coming months and years.

The task force is made up of representatives from both public and private sectors and is chaired by Derby City Council’s Chief Executive, Paul Simpson.

As well as engaging with local businesses and other key economic stakeholders over the next few weeks, the group will be working closely with the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership, East Midlands Chamber and Government departments in order to deliver its aims for the city.

Members of the task force include; Rolls-Royce, Intu, the University of Derby, the Cathedral Quarter and St Peters Quarter Business Improvement Districts, Marketing Derby and Derby Renaissance Board.

Paul Simpson, Derby City Council Chief Executive said:

It’s clear that many businesses – large and small – across the city have already been badly affected by the coronavirus crisis.

Derby City Council is supporting the city’s businesses through the coronavirus pandemic with a £47 million financial support and relief package. A dedicated team have contacted around 3,900 businesses across the city, who will be eligible for grants of either £10,000 or £25,000 from the Government’s coronavirus support packages.

Over 2,000 businesses in Derby have been supported so far as part of the scheme, totalling £25 million in grants, with around 25% of eligible businesses from across the city who haven’t yet applied for grant funding.

Efforts are already underway to assist with distribution of Government grants to those qualifying companies to help ease short-term financial pressures. However, we now need to gather intelligence to understand the scale of the threat to the local and regional economy to help form our medium and longer-term mitigation and recovery strategies for Derby. We will look at where new opportunities are possible – the group has been tasked with identifying key opportunities for financial assistance and city investment – and make sure that the city and its businesses are able to capitalise on them. The task force will do all it can to help alleviate the economic threat from coronavirus and ensure that the city has a clear plan for longer-term recovery.

Councillor Chris Poulter, Leader of Derby City Council, added:

Derby is a city of industry and manufacturing, which is an area has been hit hard as part of the coronavirus pandemic. We have a proud history and heritage and are passionate about supporting our local businesses. This is a key priority for us during these difficult and unprecedented times. This group will help to determine vital development and opportunities, as part of City Centre Masterplan, that can help to boost economy back into the city and support business sectors. We want to show that Derby is driven and committed to sustaining the city’s economic future going forward.

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