While demand has spiralled, and surprisingly this has so far been only marginally affected by the recession, we have failed to respond by supplying sufficient infrastructure. As a proportion of GDP net public investment declined from 8% in the 1970s to less than 1.5% in the late 1990s. While this has increased to around 2% it is still less than half the rate for France and the U.S. It’s not surprising that the World Economic Forum ranks the UK 33rd in the world for overall quality of its infrastructure.

The Coalition Government must continue to make policy decisions in the interests of the UK’s long-term economic needs, not just short-term political considerations. In recent months, Ministers have faced hard choices on rail fares and now face a challenge on nuclear power. They must continue to put long-term economic interests at the forefront of their decisions.