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Transport official to manage infrastructure commission

A senior civil servant in the Department of Transport has been appointed chief executive of the National Infrastructure Commission (NIC).

Phil Graham led the Government’s high-speed rail strategy, the team supporting Sir Howard Davies’ Airports Commission and worked on the London Olympics.

The NIC was announced on 5 October, and was set up to provide expert independent analysis of the long-term infrastructure needs of the country.

The body’s remit is to recommend infrastructure that is sustainable, affordable and provides real economic benefit.

Chancellor George Osborne wants reports on three projects by Budget 2016:

  • Ensuring that investment in energy infrastructure can meet future demand in the most efficient way
  • Northern transport connectivity
  • Large-scale investment in London’s transport infrastructure

The chancellor said: “The NIC will provide expert, independent advice to the Government on the most pressing ‎infrastructure challenges facing the country. Phil’s role as CEO will be vital in overseeing this work.”

Lord Adonis, interim chair of the NIC, said: “Phil Graham is supremely qualified to be the first CEO of the commission.

“He has done brilliant work on a wide range of nationally significant projects, from high-speed rail to the London Olympics and, most recently, ‎as secretary of the Airports Commission.

”He is an excellent public servant and I am confident he will be superb in his new role.”

The commission will publish a National Infrastructure Assessment every Parliament, setting out its analysis of the UK’s infrastructure needs over a 10- to 30-year horizon. The Government will be required formally to respond to the recommendations.

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