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Plaid Cymru calls for increased powers to deal with economic crisis

PLAID Cymru has called an expansion of the economic powers devolved to Wales, including lifting of borrowing restrictions.

Helen Mary Jones MS, Plaid Cymru Shadow Economy Minister has called the Welsh Government’s “reluctance” to negotiate further powers “incomprehensible.”

In a press conference today, announcing Phase 3 of the Economic Resilience Fund, Economy Minister Ken Skates admitted that Welsh Government “can’t save every business and every job” due to not possessing the “fire power” of UK Government.

Ms Jones has previously called for Welsh Government’s borrowing capacity to be increased to £5 billion over five years.

Plaid Cymru Shadow Economy Minister Helen Mary Jones MS said,

“While I welcome any support the Welsh Government is able to offer to Welsh businesses – and this package does seek to address some of the issues I have been raising with the Minister, particularly the need to support businesses effected by local lockdowns – it is clear that their hands are tied and the current devolution settlement cannot cope with the economic impact of Covid-19. Renegotiating the fiscal agreement would go a long way in dealing with our ability to react to these sorts of crises.

“Having admitted that we do not have the ‘fire power’ of UK Government, the Welsh Government’s reluctance to negotiate further powers is incomprehensible. As a minimum, the Welsh Government should be pushing for the temporary lifting of borrowing restrictions, so that Wales can borrow to invest our way to recovery.”

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