It's long been said that the North East has been over-reliant on the public sector.
The Government's Regional Growth Fund was set up to encourage private investment in areas like ours. Today, the minister Simon Hughes came to Teesside to announce eleven winning North East bids in the fifth round of the RGF.
Mr Hughes toured Tinsley Special Products in Stockton, which has received funding in two previous rounds of the Regional Growth Fund. Now, it is being awarded £3.5m, which will help it to establish a new site in Peterlee.
All told, the company says the investment from the RGF is helping to create 200 jobs.
The Government says that for every £1 from the Regional Growth Fund, the private sector injects £5.50
Some though, say the Regional Growth Fund has failed to deliver. The Hartlepool MP and Shadow Industry Minister Iain Wright says it has taken too long for money to be distributed to the regions.
He points to a National Audit Office report in February 2014, which concluded that a 'significant amount' of money was still to be allocated through the Fund.
On his visit to Stockton, Simon Hughes said the delays had been rectified.
The £3.2bn pound Regional Growth Fund runs from 2011 to 2017. Bidding for the sixth round of the RGF will open this summer.
Watch my full report here: