PLAID CYMRU Treasury Spokesperson, Jonathan Edwards MP, had prepared legislation – in the form of a 10 Minute Rule Bill – that was to be debated today in Westminster which could lead to the establishment of a new expert-led, independent body to address huge wealth inequalities.
The establishment of an independent Office for Fair Funding would have a statutory obligation to deliver geographic wealth convergence, as well as deciding on funding settlements for the devolved nations and regions of the UK.
Recent international data has shown that the largest difference in economic prosperity in Europe was between Inner London, the UK’s richest region (with a regional GDP average of 614% of the EU average), and West Wales and the Valleys, the UK’s poorest (with a regional GDP 68% of the EU average).
With the decision of the British Government to prorogue the current session of Parliament for five weeks, this has brought to an end all parliamentary business, meaning the Bill will no longer be debated today.
Jonathan Edwards MP said:
“Today is a dark day for democracy, as the operators within the British Government, who parade slogans such as ‘taking back control’, shut down Parliament to stop representatives of the people from putting forward new laws, such as mine, to deliver a fairer economic balance between the nations and regions of the UK.
“Westminster is not working for Wales. We need to be sitting in Parliament right now, challenging the fundamental problems in society and putting forward solutions.
“It is disappointing that I cannot present this Bill now in the interests of making a positive difference to the livelihoods of my constituents.”