The Welsh Liberal Democrats today unveiled their economic programme designed to create jobs by tackling low skills and boost growth. The Welsh Liberal Democrats will make it easier for businesses to take on young unemployed workers by offering grants of £2,000 to raise skill levels. 5,000 of these grants would be available every year.
Kirsty Williams, Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats, will launch the economy policy during a visit to Carillion Training Services in Cardiff. Carillion is recognised as the UK’s leading construction training organisation.
The Welsh Liberal Democrats package also includes:
• New powers for Councils to stimulate capital regeneration to renew town centres and create jobs
• Working with Welsh universities to access a fair amount of R&D investment
• A fully funded programme to invest in modernising the Welsh economy.
• Reducing the regulatory burden on small businesses.
• Establishing a Welsh Stock Exchange to give Welsh businesses greater access to capital
• Make the case for electrifying the Valleys Lines.
• Create “wi-fi towns” to encourage tourism and conference in new areas.
• Opening up procurement to smaller businesses.
Kirsty Williams AM, Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats said:
“Welsh Liberal Democrats will focus on creating new jobs and prosperity by investing in home-grown Welsh enterprises, by tackling the skills gap and by making sure that Wales has businesses that can compete in the modern world. We can only do this by tackling Labour’s shameful neglect of the skills agenda.
“But this is just one part of our plan to create jobs by boosting the economy. Skills alone will not create the jobs needed, so we will make sure our economy is modernised by setting up a Jobs and Growth Innovation Programme, which will support projects that will create jobs by modernising the economy such as increasing the number of patents, establishing business mentoring schemes and upgrading old manufacturing sites for new jobs.
“The Labour-Plaid Government has spent more money on economic development than any other part of the UK, but Wales is the poorest part of the United Kingdom and we’re still falling further behind. We have the poorest regional economy in the UK and our skills levels have been condemned by leading international businessmen.
“Labour and Plaid Cymru have failed to produce a road map for economic renewal. Welsh Liberal Democrats are the only party with a coherent and credible plan to create jobs by stimulating the economy.”