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Mark Drakeford responds to the UK Government’s Autumn Statement

Finance Secretary Mark Drakeford has today [23 November] responded to the UK Government’s Autumn Statement.
Wednesday 23 November 2016

The Autumn Statement included more than £400m of additional capital funding for Wales between 2016-17 and 2020-21 and £35.8m of revenue funding between 2016-17 and 2019-20 – this includes £20m funding previously announced as a result of the apprenticeship levy.  

Finance Secretary Mark Drakeford:  

“As a government, we have been clear about the importance of investing in Wales’ infrastructure – in these uncertain times this is more important than ever. This is why we called on the UK Government to boost investment to support economic growth.

“Although today’s announcement doesn’t go as far as we had hoped, this extra investment goes some way to restoring the cuts we have seen to our capital budget over recent years.

“Last month, we published four-year capital spending plans to put the Welsh economy on a firm footing and to prepare for the difficult years to come. The additional capital funding will provide additional resources to enable us to continue to invest in new infrastructure, creating jobs and securing Wales’ future prosperity.

“We will consider how we use this additional funding to support our investment priorities, which are set out in Taking Wales Forward and will make an announcement in the near future.”

Professor Drakeford added:

“The revenue changes are negligible and must be considered against the context of an 8% reduction in real terms to our Budget since 2010.  It is disappointing the UK Government has not taken this opportunity to end its damaging policy of austerity and provide a much-needed boost to cash-strapped public services.

“Wales has shown there is an alternative to austerity. In our draft Budget last month, we provided stability for public services in Wales, continuing to protect them from the worst of the UK Government’s continuing austerity agenda.

“The importance of a Swansea Bay City Region Deal and a growth deal for North Wales has been well-rehearsed. Discussions with the UK Government are continuing on both these fronts. It is important the UK Government now moves forward with these important deals to fully unlock their potential.”



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