The South Shields MP and former Foreign Secretary, David Miliband has led a special Commons debate on the challenges and opportunities facing the region's economy.
Mr Miliband said that he wanted to adopt a constructive approach and highlighted some success stories like Nissan and the new Hitachi plant due to open in County Durham in 2015.
But he attacked what he called the shambles of the government's energy policy, in an area where the North East should be leading the way. The lack of government certainty, he said, was threatening billions of pounds in potential development.
Other Labour MPs, including the Washington and Sunderland West member Sharon Hodgson, spoke of the scourge of unemployment - especially amongst the young.
But the political view from Teesside's coalition members was very different.
The Lib Dem MP for Redcar said the last Labour government had neglected Teesside.