Jonathan Edwards MP said the revised figures from the independent Office of Budget Responsibility show an economy on its knees. Lower growth means fewer jobs, and higher inflation means a higher cost of living – these seem to be the central tenets of life under a Tory government.
Responding to the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement, Carmarthenshire Member of Parliament and Plaid Cymru’s Treasury spokesperson, Jonathan Edwards said:
“This statement confirms that the so-called long-term economic plan is really just a short-term economic scramble. The rapid deterioration in the economy will have a painful impact on people’s jobs and wages and the Chancellor now faces a reported £120 billion black hole in public finances as a result of his government’s reckless insistence on giving up our membership of the single market.
“The revised figures from the independent Office of Budget Responsibility show an economy on its knees. Lower growth means fewer jobs, and higher inflation means a higher cost of living – these seem to be the central tenets of life under a Tory government.
“What we need is a substantial programme of infrastructure investment across the British State that is aimed at re-balancing the UK economy.
“Once again, there was very little in this statement that will help rebuild the Welsh economy and close the wage gap with England.
“It is vital that Wales maintains its economic links with the rest of the world and Plaid Cymru will continue to fight to protect our membership of the single market so that our businesses can trade freely with the world.”
Local Assembly Member and Plaid Cymru’s Shadow Cabinet Secretary for the Economy, Adam Price added:
“To be economically and socially successful any country needs a modern and efficient infrastructure. Without investing in such infrastructure a country is unable consistently both to raise productivity and to compete in international markets. Failure to raise productivity also leads to lower wages and flagging standards of living over time.
“In Plaid Cymru’s proposals to develop a National Infrastructure Commission for Wales we identified the need to raise £750m annually for investing in our infrastructure. The Chancellor’s announcement that Wales will receive a meagre £80m a year will not scratch the surface and ignores the scale of the challenge Wales faces.
“Ahead of the statement there was a great deal of talk of those ‘just about managing’. The hard and brutal reality of this statement is that hard-working families here in Carmarthenshire, who already find making ends meet a struggle every month, will continue to be hardest hit by the policies of Westminster.”