MORE congestion charging for motorists could be on the way with the approval of a new scheme for Manchester.

Bosses from 10 local councils in Greater Manchester have backed a report proposing a congestion charge by 2012.

Manchester would be the second city in Britain after London to bill drivers for journeys within a network of roads. Others cities, including Birmingham, are considering schemes.

The Manchester system would target 15 roads with the worst congestion using the latest journey monitoring technology.

The report claimed it would charge less than the £8 currently paid in London.

Unlike the capital's "blunt" all-day charging scheme, motorists would pay per mile - a charge that would vary according to the route taken and time of day.

Satellite tracking, electronic tagging and licence plate recognition technology are all being considered as methods of charging drivers.

The charges would be put in place at pinch points across the whole of Greater Manchester.

The report by the Association of Greater Manchester Authorities (AGMA) will now be subject to public consultation so drivers, local residents and businesses can have their say.

The councils say it is a "prerequisite" that the charging scheme is acceptable to the public and businesses.

AGMA has already agreed that the scheme would not be introduced on roads until those affected have a reliable, integrated public transport system which provides a genuine alternative to the car.

The report states that if no action is taken to address road congestion and improve public transport, Greater Manchester can expect to underachieve employment growth by up to 30,000 jobs in the next decade.