Councillor Roger Lawrence was reacting to the figures revealed in the Demos-PwC Good Growth for Cities Index.
Now in its sixth year, the index measures the current performance of a range of the largest UK cities, and all Local Enterprise Partnership areas in England, against a basket of ten indicators based on the views of the public and business as to what is key to economic success and wellbeing.
The indicators include jobs, health, income, skills, housing, work-life balance, income distribution, transport, environment and new businesses – and put the City of Wolverhampton and Walsall in eighth place.
Councillor Lawrence said: “Attracting new businesses like Tentec and ERA to i54 in addition to Jaguar Land Rover has clearly played a major part in these uplifting figures, as has Wolverhampton’s strong aerospace industry.
“The council continues to look for new partners to further boost the local economy, such as one of the UK’s top independent Personal Lines Insurance Brokers, Premium Choice, relocating from Birmingham’s Fort Dunlop to Pendeford Business Park recently, creating new jobs.
“We continue to create the right conditions to attract new businesses into the city. For instance, we are building on the success of i10 with plans in place to develop i9, another grade A office space on the opposite side of the road. This is all part of ambitious plans to develop a commercial quarter around the city’s new multi-million pound transport Interchange.
“The outlook for education is bright, with more schools in the City of Wolverhampton rated good or outstanding than ever before. We have also seen improving outcomes for pupils at Key Stage 1 and 2, GCSEs and post-16.
“And, with housing projects such as Bilston Urban Village and the former Royal Hospital site underway, as well as the council’s own housing company, WV Living, driving new builds there is no doubt the City of Wolverhampton economy is on the up.”
Jonathan House, Government and Public Services partner at PwC, said: “If cities are to sustain the strong performance of recent years, this puts a priority on delivering place-based growth which is inclusive and addresses key supply side constraints particularly infrastructure.
“Delivering good growth cannot be achieved by any one person working alone but goes hand-in-hand with place based transformation, where local government, central government and the private sector act together and work collaboratively to deliver outcomes and where place based leaders facilitate local economic growth, prosperity and well-being.”
To see the full Demos-PwC Good Growth for Cities Index visit: https://www.pwc.co.uk/press-room/press-releases/good-growth-for-cities-2017.html.