Our Strategic Economic Plan

Creating 100,000 more and better jobs for the North East by 2024

Growing a more productive, inclusive and sustainable regional economy

The North East has a diverse economy and our region is recognised as a high quality location for business and leisure. The Strategic Economic Plan sets out our ambition to grow the economy and create 100,000 more and better jobs by 2024.

The Plan

To increase the number of jobs in the North East economy by 100,000 by 2024


To ensure that 70% of the jobs growth is in better jobs

We’ve already made significant progress, with 64,600 new jobs created since 2014 and improvements to our employment rates, economic activity rates and productivity.

But there’s more we can do.

Our vision for the future of the North East economy

By focusing on our four areas of strategic importance – Digital, Advanced Manufacturing, Health and LIfe Sciences and Energy – we can build a stronger North East economy; one that puts us at the heart of the Northern Powerhouse and reinforces our position as one of the UK’s most important economic hubs.

The Strategic Economic Plan sets out how we’ll achieve this through our five programmes of delivery and four service sectors.

How can you help us deliver the Strategic Economic Plan

The North East Local Enterprise Partnership works with partners to lead and facilitate the delivery of the Strategic Economic Plan but it is owned by the region.

Help us achieve our ambition to create 100,000 more and better jobs for the North East by supporting the Strategic Economic Plan and becoming advocates for it within your business.

Advanced Manufacturing


Health & Life Sciences


Get to know the plan in greater detail

Time is precious. That’s why we’ve designed our Strategic Economic Plan in a variety of ways so you can get to know more about the plan for the region. Sit down with a cuppa to read our Executive Summary, or if you have more time to hand, download the full plan below.


How was the SEP developed?

The first version of the Strategic Economic Plan was published in April 2014. It followed on from the North East Independent Economic Review and set out a high level vision for the economy and included investment programmes for Local Growth Fund and European funds which were available at that time.

The SEP was refreshed during 2016 and launched in March 2017 following an extensive consultation involving businesses and economic partners. The refresh process enabled the region to reflect on new economic data following the end of the recession and the changing economic policy environment including the decision to leave the European Union.

Who are the LEP’s partners with regards to delivery of the SEP?

A range of partners work with the North East LEP to help deliver the SEP. Our partners in Local Government are responsible for planning and regional transport programmes set out in the document, and a wide range of other organisations take part in LEP programmes to support SEP objectives including through our Innovation, Business Growth and Skills Boards which include key partners from business organisations, universities and colleges. A number of central Government departments and Agencies are actively involved in our work.

Find out more about our Boards and Advisory Panels.

What is a ‘better’ job?

A ‘better’ job is defined as being in the top three Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) categories, which are: managers, directors and senior officials; professional occupations; and associate professional and technical occupations. Measuring this means we can demonstrate the growth of higher skilled roles in our economy.

Where can I find out more information about projects that the LEP has funded?

All of the projects that the North East LEP is currently funding can be found on our projects page.

Do you offer any financial support to businesses who want to grow their business?

The LEP manages three funds directly and supports a number of others. You can find out more about these funds in our funding pages.

Who to get in touch with


Responsible for development of the North East Strategic Economic Plan, the North East smart specialisation strategy, and strengthened co-ordination of North East partners in context of Northern Powerhouse.

If you have any questions or feedback please get in touch:

Richard Baker
Head of Strategy and Policy