The economic damage caused by Covid-19 has left the task of making some Yorkshire cities as prosperous as places in southern England four times more difficult.
The warning comes from a report by the Centre for Cities think tank, published today, which says the challenge to fulfill the Government's pledge to 'level up the north' is now far greater because of the pandemic.
The report says that 99,300 people in Yorkshire’s largest cities and towns now need to find secure, well-paid jobs to level up the region, compared to 20,300 last March.
Hull has been identified as facing the second biggest challenge in the UK when it comes to fulfilling the Government's pledge to 'Level Up' the North.
Bradford faces the fourth biggest challenge in the UK to find secure well-paid jobs.
Centre for Cities Chief Executive Andrew Carter said:
The report identifies the following key steps which need to be taken beyond the pandemic:
Further education to train jobless people for good roles in emerging industries
Making the city centre a better place for high-skilled businesses to locate
Improvements to transport infrastructure
A HM Treasury Spokesperson said:
‘’We are totally committed to levelling up opportunities across the whole of the UK as we build back better from the pandemic.
“This is why we’re investing £100 billion in infrastructure this year, as well as creating a new £4 billion Levelling Up Fund, establishing Freeports across the UK, reforming the Green Book, and opening a new Treasury office and UK infrastructure bank in the North in the coming year.”