Chancellor encourages Chinese investment in HS2
The bidding process for HS2 has started: At least seven new contracts with a combined value of £11.8bn are on the table.
George Osborne, Chancellor of the Exchequer, announced the news on a five day trade visit to China. He is keen to involve Chinese companies in the construction process. Work is expected to start in 2017, and will cover three geographical areas (north, south and central) along phase 1 (the section between London and Birmingham).
Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin said: “HS2 provides an excellent opportunity for businesses across the UK with 25,000 jobs created during construction and 3,000 when up and running.”
HS2 Ltd chief executive Simon Kirby said: “Over the next decade, the winners of these contracts will go on to build 140 miles of bridges, tunnels and earthworks and create thousands of jobs across the construction industry.”
There may be options for additional contracts (for work north of Birmingham) later in the year if ministers grant approval.
Construction work of phase 1 will follow Royal Assent of the hybrid bill currently making its way through Parliament.