About the North East LEP

We work with partners to grow our region’s economy through the Strategic Economic Plan.

The North East Local Enterprise Partnership (North East LEP) is a public, private and education sector partnership.

We are one of thirty-eight LEPs in the country and are responsible for promoting and developing economic growth in the local authority areas of County Durham, Gateshead, Newcastle, North Tyneside, Northumberland, South Tyneside and Sunderland.

We produce our area’s Strategic Economic Plan, which acts as a blueprint for the activities that need to take place to improve our economy.

View the plan.

LEPs were formed following the Local Growth White Paper which was issued in October 2010. This white paper led to government inviting local authorities and businesses to form Local Enterprise Partnerships, with the first one being established in April 2011.

In England, there are thirty-eight LEPs actively championed by the Departments for Communities & Local Government (DCLG) and Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS).

Find out more about LEPs on the LEP Network website.

Our history

In 2012, we commissioned Lord Andrew Adonis, together with a team of major influential figures, to recommend future pathways for the North East economy, focussing on growth and productivity.

The result was the North East Independent Economic Review, which provided us with a detailed, independent, evidence base of information that went on to inform all aspects of our Strategic Economic Plan.

Read the North East Independent Economic Review and the Evidence Base.

The North East LEP covers the local authority areas of
County Durham, Gateshead, Newcastle, North
Tyneside, Northumberland, South Tyneside and

Within this area, we have a population of two million
people and a skilled and resilient workforce. In 2018,
the North East produced goods and services valued at
£41 billion. This is due to our three great cities, a wider
urban economy and our rural and coastal locations
which offer a diverse range of investment opportunities
and an excellent quality of life.
The North East is built to work, with local road, rail, air
and digital infrastructures giving easy access to local

North East LEP Area map

A great place to live, learn and do business

We are proud of the North East’s industrial history, which helped shape the global economy and continues to influence our future. Our capacity for invention and innovative delivery, from railways, to hydraulics, to stem cells, highlights our creative spirit and pioneering culture.

Our three great cities are globally recognised. Newcastle has vibrant science, education, culture, digital and service sectors. Historic Durham has a leading university, science and tourism sites.

Sunderland is renowned for its manufacturing capability, being the home of Nissan’s world-leading car manufacturing base and the focus of one the Europe’s leading automotive clusters.

Our towns, rural and coastal communities provide employment in a number of sectors. Across these territories, creative initiatives embedding new business growth are underway. For example incubators alongside rural tourism hubs like The Sill in Northumberland, growth in iconic cultural locations like Beamish and Auckland Castle and initiatives to foster digital innovation in farming and water delivery demonstrate opportunities to drive employment across every part of our economy.

Underpinning investment and expansion is a strong sense of regional identity, a skilled and committed workforce, a powerful and engaged business community, and public bodies committed to development and regeneration.

Find out more about our region on the Invest North East England website.