Posted: Fri 21st Oct 2016

Finance Ministers Will Press Chancellor For Infrastructure Stimulus

This article is old - Published: Friday, Oct 21st, 2016

The Finance Ministers from the Devolved Administrations today met in Newry. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Northern Ireland Executive Finance Minister, Máirtín Ó Muilleoir MLA today hosted a trilateral ministerial meeting with his Scottish and Welsh counterparts in Newry. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

The Northern Ireland Executive Finance Minister brought together Scottish Cabinet Secretary for Finance and Constitution Derek Mackay MSP and Welsh Cabinet Secretary for Finance, Mark Drakeford AM to discuss key financial issues ahead of their meeting with the Chief Secretary to the Treasury on Monday. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Speaking after the meeting, Welsh Government Cabinet Secretary for Finance, Mark Drakeford said: ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“This is our second meeting since the outcome of the EU referendum and we remain in uncertain and difficult times. We continue to face cuts to our Budgets and none of us know yet what impact the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement will have on our financial outlook. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“That is why these meetings are so important, providing us with an opportunity to get together to discuss areas of mutual concern ahead of our meeting with the Treasury next week. We continue to press for early clarity and engagement around the Autumn Statement and what the ‘fiscal resetting’ will mean for our respective settlements.” ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Northern Ireland Executive Finance Minister Ó Muilleoir said: ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“I was delighted to host today’s ministerial Trilateral in the border region of Newry for the first time. During the meeting we discussed a number of mutually important issues including the ongoing implications of the EU referendum, the Apprenticeship Levy, the devolution of fiscal measures and how we can drive our economies forward in the current economic climate. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“Together we represent over ten million people across the devolved regions and I remain of the opinion that we are stronger speaking as one voice. We are calling for a stimulus to be included in Chancellor Hammond’s 23 November Autumn Statement to provide immediate and significant capital funding to accelerate the pace of investment in our infrastructure. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“On the issue of European funding we still have no guarantee on how these important funding streams will be replaced in the future.” ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Scottish Cabinet Secretary for Finance and the Constitution Derek Mackay MSP said: ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“It remains clear that the devolved governments agree that the lack of clarity from the UK Government is damaging our ability to plan investment in our economy, to protect jobs, support businesses, and maintain high quality public services. As a result of the UK Government’s approach, we are seeing an increased level of uncertainty for public finances. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“The Scottish Government has consistently called on Chancellors past and present to end austerity and invest in our economy and public services – funded through borrowing rather than cuts –an approach that seeks to tackle the inequalities in our society rather than exacerbate them. I am pleased that I can join my Northern Irish and Welsh counterparts in calling for our budgets to be protected, which is even more important in this time of economic uncertainty.” ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Spotted something? Got a story? Email News@News.Wales

More from Government

Welsh team set to compete at Special Olympics, thanks to Welsh Government and Disability Sport Wales funding


Welsh Government Seeks Innovative Ideas To Tackle Childhood Obesity With Healthier And Cheaper Food Choices


Supporting People Budget Protected


New Funding For Musical Instruments In Schools – Kirsty Williams


Superfast Birth Boosts Business For Pwllheli Farm


Appointments To Advisory Panel On Substance Misuse


Latest from News.Wales

Audit Wales Report Highlights Lack of Understanding of Powys Residents’ Needs by Senior Council Chiefs

Powys Council

Former Village School in Carmarthenshire Transformed into Community Hub and Cafe

Carmarthenshire Council

Legal Agreement for Financial Contributions Towards Pembrokeshire’s Bluestone Resort Expected to End

Pembrokeshire Council

Merthyr Tydfil Council to Potentially Transition 40 More Vehicles to Electric with £400,000 Funding

Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council

Deadline for Police Commissioner Election Registration Approaching in Wales

Monmouthshire Council

Failings in Contract Management by Powys County Council Result in Losses for Local Businesses

Powys Council