Venue: Committee Room 2, CO3, Civic Offices, New Road, Grays, Essex, RM17 6SL.
Contact: Lucy Tricker, Senior Democratic Services Officer Email: Direct.Democracy@thurrock.gov.uk
Items of Urgent Business
To receive additional items that the Chair is of the opinion should be considered as a matter of urgency, in accordance with Section 100B (4) (b) of the Local Government Act 1972. To agree any relevant briefing notes submitted to the Committee.
There were no items of urgent business.
Declaration of Interests
There were no interests declared.
The Assistant Director of Economic Growth and
Partnerships introduced the report and stated that he believed the
Thames Freeport was a significant economic opportunity for Thurrock
over the next few years. He explained that it would be private
sector led by Forth Ports, DP World and Ford, but would include
three local authorities: Thurrock; the London Borough of Barking
and Dagenham (LBBD); and the London Borough of Havering (LBH). He
stated that the Freeport Business Case (FBC) outlined the proposed
governance for the Thames Freeport, and framed by government
guidance, there would be a Governance Board formally established
with Ruth Kelly as the Chairperson, and 12 Board members, including
local authorities and key stakeholders. He stated that the first
meeting of the Governance Board would be in early 2023, dependent
on Cabinet approval and approval of the FBC by the Department of
Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DHLUC). The Assistant
Director of Economic Growth and Partnerships explained that the
Board would be accountable to government through a Memorandum of
Understanding, and would be responsible for the delivery of
Freeport objectives such as creating a global hub for trade, a
centre for innovation, and enabling levelling up and regeneration.
He commented that the report asked the Committee to note the
potential economic benefits, endorse the approach supporting Thames
Freeport, and provide comments on the governance structure before
the report was submitted to Cabinet on 7 December. The Assistant
Director of Economic Growth and Partnerships clarified the process
that had been undertaken on Thames Freeport, explaining that a
business case had been submitted to DHLUC on 14 April 2022, and was
currently going through the quality assurance process, which
included critical action responses from Thames Freeport to DHLUC.
He expected formal approval of the FBC early in the New Year.