Growing Mid Wales Partnership welcomes UK Government funding to ignite regional ambition

8 Oct 2019 01:18 PM

Following the UK Government’s announcement of a £55 million investment in the Mid Wales Growth Deal, Welsh Secretary Alun Cairns met with the Leaders of Powys and Ceredigion county councils together with members of the region’s private sector.

The £55 million of UK Government funding will be used to generate further investment from the private sector to deliver local projects which will increase opportunity and prosperity in communities across mid Wales. The Economic Strategy Group will play a vital role in advising, supporting and advocating to support the region’s ambitions.

Following the meeting with the Leaders of the Growing Mid Wales Partnership Councillors Ellen ap Gwynn and Rosemarie Harris said:

The Growing Mid Wales Partnership welcomes an announcement from the Welsh Secretary Alun Cairns MP that £55m of funding will be offered for a growth deal in the region.

The Partnership has been working with both the UK and Welsh Governments, businesses and public and third sector partners to provide strong cross-sector leadership and vision to drive regional growth and prosperity across mid Wales.

We welcome the recently announced funding and look forward to developing detailed proposals as part of a broader vision for growing the economy of mid Wales. This helps recognise the particular needs and challenges of growing the mid Wales economy – but we have to play to our strengths and ensure we strive for meaningful and sustainable growth. It is vital that we have a clear vision to make the most effective use of this initial investment; to unlock and attract a broader package of investment that will be required to fully realise our ambition.

We’ve invested time in getting the governance right in our region, ensuring that we have strong, accountable and effective partnership structures. The involvement of the private sector in the region will be crucial to help shape and advise on our regional vision to support skills, innovation, connectivity and more productive jobs supporting prosperous and bilingual communities. In that regard, we today announce that the region is searching for a private sector representative to lead a private sector board, the Economic Strategy Group.

The nomination process for the Chair and Vice-Chair is now open for applications from suitably qualified individuals with extensive experience of the private sector who can act as an ambassador for the business community and be their voice in the decision-making process as we move forward. The deadline for applications will be 18 October 2019.

The Secretary of State for Wales, Alun Cairns said:

I was thrilled to be able to announce £55 million from the UK Government for the Mid Wales Growth Deal recently and am now looking forward to working closely with local partners to develop a strong Heads of Terms.

Delivering transformational projects across mid Wales is a top priority for the UK Government and that is why we are committed to providing the funding necessary to generate essential private sector investment.

What is most important is that we enable the people who live, work and do business in mid Wales to develop plans that utilise the region’s strengths. This funding will do just that, allowing the Powys and Ceredigion Councils to work with businesses, the public sector and third sector to use local knowledge to realise mid Wales’ full potential.

Today’s meeting with Councillors Ellen ap Gwynn and Rosemarie Harris provided the perfect opportunity to start discussions around how this funding can be used to build on the progress already made and move towards the development of project plans that will bolster skills, jobs and innovation.

I was also pleased to hear that the region is now searching for a private sector representative to lead the Economic Strategy Group. Private sector involvement is vital in the delivery of projects that will create jobs and foster prosperity across mid Wales and therefore it is fantastic to see that the region are working to ensure that the private sector are involved every step of the way.

For further information regarding the nominations process, please contact the relevant Communications Team. (Ceredigion: pressoffice@ceredigion.gov.uk. Powys: media.enquiries@powys.gov.uk).