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UK MP’s attitudes to infrastructure investment

A new Ipsos MORI survey into MP’s attitudes towards UK infrastructure reinforces the need for increased investment and the important role of the private sector in its delivery, echoing much of the sentiment expressed in the 2019 GIIA/Ipsos MORI Global Infrastructure Index.

All UK MPs interviewed agreed that investing in infrastructure is vital to Britain's future economic growth, a view shared by 80% of the public. There is also a strong belief that Britain is not doing enough to meet its infrastructure needs, highlighting an overall feeling of dissatisfaction with Britain’s current infrastructure: 22% of MPs rate it positively compared to 36% of the public.

On the question of private investment providing the infrastructure Britain needs, both MPs and the public showed high levels of support with more than 90% of MPs saying they were comfortable with private investment, while the general public responded favourably by a 4 to 1 margin compared to those who were opposed to it.

Views diverge on the sectors that should be prioritised for investment. The Global Infrastructure Index shows that 40% of the public think solar energy infrastructure is an investment priority, followed by flood defences and rail, whereas MPs prioritise digital infrastructure relatively more highly than the public (57% compared to 25%), perhaps indicative of the need for elected representatives to better understand the priorities of their constituents which seem to be more heavily focussed on green, sustainable investments.

At GIIA, we continue to maintain a strategic dialogue with Government on behalf of our members on the role of private investment in infrastructure, including through the UK Investable Infrastructure Senior Leadership Group as well as through key channels across DIT, BEIS and HM Treasury where we are actively informing long term policy development and advocating for the role of private investment to deliver the infrastructure that communities rely on today, and that future generations will need tomorrow.

Results of the 2020 Global Infrastructure Index, produced in partnership between GIIA and Ipsos MORI, will be published in the Autumn.