Towns are the backbone of our economy, the heart of our communities, and the engine of job creation. Yet, they often face significant challenges, including funding allocation, skills challenges, infrastructure issues and digital adoption. In a time of economic uncertainty, rising living costs, and productivity challenges, it is crucial to create the right conditions for towns, helping them to thrive and grow.
Key recommendations for addressing shortcomings in each policy priority area include:
- People and skills: Foster local digital skills development and collaboration.
- Business environment: Promote digital enablement for local small businesses, expand practical knowledge on related challenges like fraud, and enable startup ecosystems in towns through public-private partnerships.
- Infrastructure: Enhance integrated transportation and connectivity across towns; and promote connectivity enhancement and digital inclusion.
- Sustainability: Promote sustainable businesses and communities through circularity and resource efficiency.
- National coordination: Collaborative town empowerment and alignment of a long-term strategic vision for towns.