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Boost growth by handing tax powers to cities, says thinktank

Economic growth could be boosted by £79bn a year if UK cities could make their own decisions on tax and spending, a study has found. 

The BBC reports a year-long study carried out by the RSA City Growth Commission found that handing cities the power to decide their own tax and spending policy would boost UK productivity by the equivalent of 5 per cent.

The commission, chaired by economist Jim O’Neill, wants to see draft legislation in place by next year, to achieve the £79bn boost to annual economic growth by 2030.

The commission said: “There needs to be a radical reshaping of the UK’s political economy, with our metros given sufficient decision-making powers and financial flexibilities in order to become financially sustainable.”

Debate around devolving more powers to UK cities has come in the wake of the Scottish referendum, and plans to hand more powers to Scotland.

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