Posted: Fri 14th Oct 2016

City Leader Invites Internationally-Renowned Experts To Third Cardiff Convention /
This article is old - Published: Friday, Oct 14th, 2016

Internationally-renowned city experts will discuss the future of Wales’ capital city at the third Cardiff Convention held in the Wales Millennium Centre, on Thursday, October 13. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Among the speakers are future technology expert Newsha Ghaeli from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), leading education advisor to the UK Government Sir Alastair MacDonald, Isabel Dedring global transport leader with ARUP, and Roel Spee, an expert on corporate location strategies for IBM. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Opening the convention, City of Cardiff Council leader, Cllr Phil Bale, will call for powers already devolved to Wales to be fully utilised in order to help Cardiff continue to grow and prosper to benefit the whole nation. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Cllr Bale, said: “The Convention is all about learning from the world’s best about how we can create a city of the future, one that is a great place to live and work in, one that is fair and sustainable. Right now Cardiff is a great place to live, but if we want it to remain a great liveable city then we have to accept that the growth we are currently experiencing brings its own challenges. Challenges we need to face up to. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“Cardiff is a success story, but it could do so much more for the region and the country if it was properly funded and nurtured. There needs to be recognition of the role cities play in creating economic growth. All the evidence shows that it is cities that drive economies for nations, not the other way around. National policy makers are adapting to this reality, but there are lessons that we still need to learn here in Wales. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“Put bluntly – for Wales to succeed it needs an industrial strategy which exploits the power of its cities. This would mark a radical shift in Welsh economic policy. But now – with Brexit looming – radical thinking is needed. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“A one-size fits all economic strategy that is blind to the differences between Cardiff and Caernarfon will prove to be a strait jacket for the Welsh economy.
“Much is made of devolution to English cities, but the powers they’ve been given do not compare to those already devolved to Wales. We need to use the devolved freedom we have here in Wales to help our cities power ahead. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“Cardiff is currently contributing around £70m annually to the rest of Wales from its business rates. Yet the city’s infrastructure has been radically underfunded. This needs to change. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“We are doing wonderful things in the city, the regeneration of Central Square is a prime example, but there are other areas where we are being hampered and held back. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“If Cardiff is to truly reach its potential then its importance to the Welsh economy has to be recognised and it has to receive a sufficient level of funding and be given the powers it needs to ensure we can manage growth effectively and continue to deliver services and build a city where people can have a great life. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

“This convention is all about learning from the best, pointing us in the right direction, helping us deliver on our vision of becoming Europe’s most liveable capital city. It’s a vision I truly believe we can achieve but only if the powers we need are given to the city.” ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

The third Cardiff Convention will take place between 8.00am and 4.30pm at the Wales Millennium Centre on October 13. Speeches from leading thinkers will be given in the morning and workshops will follow in the afternoon. All media are welcome. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

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