A “CITY deal” which could unlock millions of pounds to fund major transport projects and create jobs in Oxfordshire has been approved.

Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has tonight announced Oxfordshire was one of 20 regions included in the second wave of City Deals.

Eight cities that already have such deals - included Bristol and Manchester - have been promised billions in public and private investment, to fund road improvements, public transport and job training.

The Oxfordshire deal will focus on expanding the so-called “knowledge-based economy”, which includes the scientific research carried out at Harwell Laboratories Culham Research Centre and the two universities.

Over the next nine months, councils, universities and business leaders in the county will thrash out the specifics of the deal with Whitehall.

City Council leader Bob Price said: “It’s an exciting step forward and gives us a real opportunity to work with businesses and the universities to drive a knowledge-based economy in the Oxfordshire region."