Greater Manchester has the potential to become the 'key economic engine of the north' and a second centre of growth to complement London if handed greater self-government, according to an independent report published yesterday.

The city of 3.2m people has sufficient scale and external transport links, including the biggest airport outside the south-east, but it would require a radical shake-up of policymaking, said the Manchester Independent Economic Review.

The review is the most detailed examination of a city economy in the UK and features analysis by leading researchers. It was led by a panel including Sir Tom McKillop, former chairman of Royal Bank of Scotland, Jim O’Neill, chief economist of Goldman Sachs, and Jonathan Kestenbaum, chief executive of the National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts.

Financial Times