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The North East COVID-19 Economic Response Group: Solving challenges together

A North East COVID-19 Economic Response Group has launched to provide business resilience and get the region ready for recovery throughout the COVID-19 outbreak.

It has a five point plan in place. Alan Welby, Innovation Director at the North East Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), is leading the response in terms of mobilising partners to help problem solve.

Right now the North East COVID-19 Economic Response Group is working hard to marshal resources and bring our collective organisations together to support businesses and partners in the heat of a really challenging time for the nation and economy.

There are three ways in which we aim to particularly add value:

  • By helping organisations address their immediate challenges
  • By supporting frontline delivery and mobilising the incredible power of businesses to aid with that
  • By looking into the future and preparing for an economy that will be substantially different when we get back to a kind of normal

Getting the right information out to businesses is absolutely critical so they know what measures they can access and are able to navigate through a very turbulent time. We’re signposting to support on different business models, distance working and a variety of issues that COVID-19 is throwing up.

Particularly important is that we help companies do the right thing and look after staff, customers and suppliers in a really challenging environment.

Working together at scale

It’s an extremely stressful time for many business owners out there so we are trying to listen closely to people’s worries and fears and respond accordingly. Cascading national information down on a regional and local level is an important role in this and gives reassurance that everyone is working together at scale for the common good.

A lot of the activity I’ve been leading on has related to working with businesses to provide rapid solutions to some of the specific challenges faced by Government due to COVID-19. These include the provision of ventilators and PPE equipment as well as many other examples. We are trying to match make both nationally and regionally as equally the North East has issues specific to this geographical patch.

Part of this work involves mobilising various communities, such as those in digital and logistics, to build tools to help people communicate better and move equipment around more efficiently.


Published on the North East Growth Hub

Those wanting to know more and get involved can access the latest opportunities by visiting the Call Directory on the North East Growth Hub. There are over twenty published at the minute and there will no doubt be more to come. If you can help, please do as there are some big strategic issues that need to be addressed as early as possible.

Finally, as part of our ongoing dialogue with Government we continue to gather data to inform its work and interventions, and ours, which is why we continue to ask all businesses owners to complete this survey. Finding out what businesses need right now and sharing that intelligence is very important as you’d expect, so we welcome people engaging with us and encouraging others to do so too.

To stay up to date with progress, follow @northeastlep on Twitter or visit the North East COVID-19 Economic Response Group page. Lots of helpful support can also be found on the North East Growth Hub.