Vaughan Gething calls on UK Government to take urgent action on economic challenges
The UK Government must urgently provide a stable, long-term strategy to tackle the urgent economic challenges facing Wales and the UK, Economy Minister, Vaughan Gething will say today.
Mr Gething made the call ahead of the first UK Interministerial Group for Business and Industry meeting of 2023 – which will bring together ministers and senior officials from the Welsh Government, UK Government, Scottish Government and Northern Ireland Executive.
Following the meeting, the Minister will update the Senedd later this afternoon.
At Tuesday’s meeting the minister will call for a strong focus on sustainable growth that unlocks opportunities for Wales and ends an era of damaging economic centralism.
He will also highlight the progress made in engaging in partnership with the UK Government on Freeports and the future of Borders policy.
The minister will also highlight significant challenges and concerns in areas including carbon emissions trading, the semiconductor cluster and the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.
Speaking ahead of the meeting, Mr Gething said: “The UK economy is now in a worse position than any other G7 nation and economic centralism is part of the problem.
“Forecasts from the Office for Budget Responsibility and the Bank of England indicate unemployment in Wales increasing between 20,000 and 40,000 over the next 18 months. Inflation is expected to remain at around 10% over the first half of this year, and productivity is weak.
“The impact of soaring energy bills and inflation was intensified by the UK Government’s disastrous early autumn mini-budget which baked in preventable harm at the worst conceivable time.
“Last week’s announcement by Liberty Steel demonstrates UK government action is now essential, not optional.
“Wales and the rest of the UK needs the UK Government to develop a responsible and coherent strategy for sustainable economic recovery and growth.
“The lessons are clear – good engagement has the power to deliver stronger economic outcomes. It is time for the UK Government to invest in partnership to develop a stronger Welsh economy in a fairer, more secure UK economy.”
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