Liam Randall, local democracy reporter
A Liberal Democrat candidate for May’s Senedd election has said the Welsh Government should be “ashamed” after it was revealed it has more jobs based in Dubai than Flintshire.
Figures show that of the 5,425 full-time Welsh Government jobs, zero are based in Flintshire – Wales’ sixth largest council.
Meanwhile, the devolved administration employs one staff member based in Dubai, one in Paris, one in Tokyo and two people in Washington.
Across the six North Wales counties, fewer than ten per cent of Welsh Government jobs are based in the region.
The data was provided by the office of First Minister Mark Drakeford in response to a Freedom of Information request submitted by the Flintshire Liberal Democrats.
Chris Twells, the party’s candidate for Alyn and Deeside in the upcoming Senedd elections, has slammed the figures.
He said: “For 21 years, successive Welsh Labour governments in Cardiff Bay have promised that all of Wales will benefit from devolution.
“However, actions speak louder than words and Labour politicians should be ashamed that more Welsh Government jobs are based in Dubai than in Flintshire.
“Flintshire has always returned Labour MSs to the Senedd but these figures suggest that voters’ support for Labour has been taken for granted.
“It’s clear that our area can’t afford another five years of neglect – either from the Conservatives or Labour.
“Only the Welsh Liberal Democrats have a clear plan for securing a fair funding deal for Flintshire and the wider region.”
In response, the Welsh Government said the individual employed in Dubai was there as part of work to increase trade and investment.
A spokesperson added that more of its staff were working from home since the Covid-19 outbreak began, including those who live in Flintshire.
They said: “Our staff are based all over Wales, with around 95 per cent of people working from home during the coronavirus pandemic – this includes around 50 people living in Flintshire.
“The majority of our roles are advertised on a location-neutral basis and, in the longer term, we expect most of our employees will continue to work remotely for two-to-three days a week.
“This greater flexibility will mean that even more of our roles will allow people to work from wherever they live in Wales.”