Monday 13 November 2023
Transport body Midlands Connect is researching the changing landscape of freight and logistics, a significant regional economic multiplier.
Home to the 'Golden logistics triangle', the Midlands is responsible for huge numbers of jobs automotive industries, food production and businesses importing and exporting goods.
With large numbers of firms warehousing in the region and many international companies choosing to base here, Midlands Connect is working to understand how the infrastructure, digital and refuelling demands of the sector will develop in the coming decades.
To mark the progress, the first Midlands Connect Freight Week runs this week (November 13-17), with a series of online activities shared under #MCFreightWeek, highlighting some of the case studies and results of the research.
Roads Minister, Richard Holden MP, said: "The Midlands is the beating heart of our brilliant freight and logistics sector, which is crucial for the national economy to thrive, and that’s why it’s great to see Midlands Connect working to understand how the industry will evolve in the coming years.
"We’ve recently announced £200 million to roll out up to 370 zero emission trucks, many of which will drive in the Midlands, as we continue to boost tech and innovation and attract the next generation of talent to freight through the Generation Logistics campaign."
Maria Machancoses, CEO of Midlands Connect, said: "Through trade and investment, the Midlands contributes £90bn annually to the UK economy. In order to keep its global competitiveness, the demand for the movement of goods is ever-increasing including the need for reliable connections to international gateways.
"With this rising demand also comes key environmental challenges placing the freight industry at a cusp of a green technical revolution.
By working with partners and businesses across the sector, we can better understand and plan alternative fuels provision, and give strategic direction on multi-modal interchanges between road, rail, air, and ports."
The first issue of the Midlands Connect Freight Routemap was published last year, as a starting point for the work, and it led to the establishment of a Freight Forum for the Midlands.
A second issue of the Freight Routemap, with further modelling and analysis work will be completed next year.
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