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George Osborne reaffirms commitment to Northern Powerhouse

George Osborne has insisted he will remain committed to the Northern Powerhouse concept after his tenure as Tatton MP ends.

The former Chancellor, who was named as editor of the Evening Standard newspaper last month, will not stand for re-election when parliament dissolves this summer but vows to “remain active” in debates about Britain’s future.

His resignation letter reads: “I am stepping down from the House of Commons – for now. But I will remain active in the debate about our country’s future and on the issues I care about, like the success of the Northern Powerhouse.

“I want a Britain that is free, open, diverse and works with other nations to defend our democratic values in the world. I will go on fighting for that Britain I love from the editor’s chair of a great newspaper. It’s still too early to be writing my memoirs.”

Osborne is credited with devising the Northern Powerhouse concept, which envisions towns and city across the region consolidating their resources to compete with the South.

He founded the Northern Powerhouse Partnership in September 2016 in an attempt to create a new network to stimulate economic growth across the region.

The partnership delivered its first report early this year, highlighting skills training, infrastructure and broadband provision as key areas the region must address to fulfil its economic potential

Osborne’s decision to leave the House of Commons coincides with the news that MPs have backed Prime Minister Theresa May’s call for a snap general election on 8 June by 522 votes to 13.