MIPIM 2015: Anderson pleas for end to austerity
The General Election in May is "the most important election for Liverpool, ever" following the impact of budget cuts on the local authority, says Mayor Joe Anderson.
When asked about his message to voters and politicians ahead of the May elections, Anderson said: "We're in a desperate situation when it comes to local government settlement, and we can't take it any more.
"Our funding from central government has been cut by 58%. This is the most important election for Liverpool ever, as if we don't get any more money we'll only be able to do the statutory minimum.
"My advice is get out there and vote. Both parties can see the devolution train is on the track, which can only mean good things for Liverpool."
Liverpool is part of a group local authorities alongside Wirral, Knowsley, Halton, Sefton and St Helens. The city region has got a reputation for infighting going back decades. After the first meeting to establish the combined authority in April 2014 Anderson threatened to take legal action when a vote over leadership of the new authority was allegedly taken while he was absent.
At a joint event with Manchester at MIPIM this week, Anderson admitted that he was "frustrated by the lack of vision and ambition" of the city region, which he described as "parochial".
When pressed further on this issue at the Liverpool dinner on Tuesday night, he said: "If the city region doesn't join with Liverpool to target powers from central government, Liverpool will just keep redeveloping itself. You only have to witness what is going on in the city to see that our approach is working.
"But right now, I am perplexed as to how that's going to happen, at the moment local authorities see devolution as Liverpool taking powers from them, which would not be the case."
As for Liverpool's presence at MIPIM, where there are 26 companies in the city's delegation, Anderson was optimistic.
"It's a success already," he said. "There has been real interest in investment with good quality companies.
"Putting yourself in the shop window is really important, and that's why it's essential for us to be here. Liverpool has turned a corner, in terms of showcasing. We are now a recognised brand, investing and developing across the city and confident about our future.
"The best days lie ahead."