Logistics businesses in the North of England could generate £35bn in economic benefits for the region by 2060 and create 80,000 jobs, according to a new report.

However, the report from Transport for the North (TfN), warns that achieving this potential is reliant on public sector interventions to enable the predominantly private-sector logistics industry to operate more efficiently and boost its confidence to invest.

John Cridland, chair of TfN, said: “This is an important report both for the private sector and for local and central government, with a range of practical suggested interventions to help create a step change in the Northern economy.”

Recommendations in the Freight and Logistics report include addressing pinch points on the road network, such as the M62 and key routes into ports and airports; developing 50 hectares of multimodal distribution parks; improved rail and water freight capacity from and within the North; creation of a network of secure HGV parks; and addressing workplace skills shortages.

As well as economic benefits, the report has suggestions in regards ways that the freight sector’s impact on the environment could be managed through modal shift away from roads, the creation of urban consolidation centres and councils exploring zero-emission last-mile delivery options.

TfN will now decide which schemes to take forward in its Strategic Transport Plan, which will be published next year and map out the priorities for the region.

FTA head of policy in the North of England, Malcolm Bingham, said: “It is great to have such an important body recognise that public policy and logistics is not just about managing the social impacts of freight, but also about enabling our industry to contribute to economic growth across all sectors.”

He added that while report was heavily rail and port oriented, it did acknowledge that road freight still played a major role with significant highways investment planned.