(Bloomberg) --

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said a “green” recovery will be vital to help the U.K. come back from a dramatic economic downturn caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

The premier was responding to a question in the House of Commons from Conservative lawmaker Mark Fletcher, who proposed a “green enterprise zone” to promote low-carbon manufacturing and research to his district in northern England.

“It is indeed the vision that I have for the whole country,” Johnson said. “The green recovery is going to be essential to this country’s success in the next few years.”

Johnson’s new environmental agenda will likely be tied to a major speech and a financial statement expected in coming weeks. Amid forecasts of the worst recession in 300 years, Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak is drawing up options to bolster the economy as the government withdraws its vast package of financial support in the months ahead.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.