Stephen Crabb set out how he will fight to bring new business and investment to Wales.
In his first speech to the Institute of Directors in Wales, Mr Crabb said that:
- Wales deserves world-class infrastructure just as much as the South East and North of England.
- Businesses want to see the administrations in Cardiff and Westminster working well together.
- He wants a shared vision for infrastructure so that no matter which party is in power in Cardiff or Westminster, everybody can get behind it to deliver transformational differences for the people and businesses of Wales.
He also heralded the hard work and risk-taking of Wales businesses in a speech that emphasised the dynamic, cutting edge private sector which is driving economic growth across Wales at this time.
Mr Crabb said:
There is an economic recovery in Wales, and it’s being led from the front by the only people who can genuinely create wealth and opportunity in society – and that is the men and women who risk their own capital to start and run businesses, with fresh ideas and a determination to succeed.
He stressed to the audience of Welsh business leaders what they had already achieved with 8,000 new businesses starting each year in Wales, 23,000 new private sector jobs created in Wales last year and 100,000 new private sector jobs since April 2010.
Mr Crabb said:
Don’t let anyone talk this down. We have some good foundations to build on as we look to the future and the prospects for a stronger, more successful Welsh economy.
As well as highlighting how the UK Government was creating the conditions for business growth – including reducing the deficit, cutting Corporation Tax and reducing red tape – Mr Crabb said that a close partnership with business was essential to continue to create the right conditions and confidence for businesses in Wales to innovate, invest and create jobs.
Today’s speech comes just before the inaugural meeting today of a newly established economic advisory group that Mr Crabb is chairing, and just over a week until the major investment summit in Wales, which more than 150 business leaders are attending to showcase Wales as a hub of UK excellence in the high-tech sector.
Today has also marked the start of the UK Government’s Export Week to encourage more businesses to expand into overseas markets and highlighting the support available to them.
Mr Crabb also today met First Minister Carwyn Jones to discuss proposals on devolution and the process that will lead to publishing joint commitments from all parties by St David’s Day. They also discussed how to improve the competitiveness of the Welsh economy and make the most of next week’s investment summit to help Welsh businesses secure trade and investment deals.
- Read a press release about the Economic Advisory Board issued today.
- UK Trade & Investment is holding its 6th Export Week from 10-14 November. Across the week there will be events all over the UK, aimed at businesses to either start their export journey or increase their international business.
- UKTI’s flagship road show ExploreExport will be touring Wales and UKTI trade officers worldwide will be available for 1-2-1 meetings on their dedicated markets to help companies explore the possibilities of exporting to their countries.
- Read more information about the UK Investment Summit which takes in Newport, Wales, from 20-21 November.