Wednesday, 25 May 2011
Serious Challenges for Croydon's Economy
The latest report from the Centre for Cities has published a report titled: 'Linked In: Realising Croydon's potential now'.
It is a report that is about jobs and does a very thorough job in analysing where Croydon is and what needs to be done to keep jobs in Croydon and bring more jobs to Croydon.
The loss of 1,000 jobs at the Home Office in Croydon is a sad reflection of where government rhetoric does not meet practical measures. The Government is keen to take jobs from Central London and put them in lower cost centres. Anyone who looks at any of the commercial estate agents web sites will find out that Croydon is exactly that. A low cost centre. Office rents are a tiny proportion of the city of London and Docklands. That is the real Croydon advantage, yet our borough fails to take advantage of it.
Our beloved Council instead concentrates on being developer friendly for housing led schemes and conversion of office blocks like St Georges House (NESTLE). This is the wrong strategy for Croydon as we need to keep jobs in our Town and attract new companies and existing companies to locate here for the flexibility and value for money that our location offers.
I have only started to read the report, but it sets out the stark reality on its front page.
Average workplace based weekly wage (2009) £627
Business with 1-10 employees (2008) 87.1%
Private sector job growth (1998 - 2008) -10,500
Public sector job creation (1998 - 1008) +14,000
Public sector job losses (forecast by 2014/15) 2,000
They are alarming stats and show that Croydon has a real challenge ahead of it. I also think it brings into question the current councils plan to reduce the head count of staff by at least 2,000 by externalising services and therefore jobs. Lots of those jobs will go abroad or elsewhere in the UK. That means that our local economy will suffer. Our community will suffer.
READ THE FULL REPORT HERE