Public Sector News

 

Key financial reform discussions continue

Finance Minister Jane Hutt has yesterday updated Assembly Members on how talks with the UK Government on financial reform have progressed.

Following publication of the Silk Commission’s proposals on financial reform in the Autumn, discussions have continued between the Welsh Government, HM Treasury and the Wales Office about devolving additional financial powers to Wales.

Jane Hutt said:

"We have always made it clear that our financial priorities are the devolution of borrowing powers to finance major capital projects in Wales, along with the full devolution of a range of several other taxes that could provide us with useful levers to support economic growth.

"We are continuing to have constructive discussions with the Treasury and I’m pleased that both Governments remain committed to constructive joint working on securing a better financial settlement for Wales within a stronger United Kingdom."

Speaking about a Welsh Treasury function the Minister added:

"One of the Silk Commission’s recommendations was for the Welsh Government to establish a new Welsh Treasury function to manage the new tax and borrowing powers for Wales.  The design and scale of the function will depend on which of the Silk recommendations are implemented, and the impact of each requirement on the Treasury function will depend on the way and scale in which they are implemented.

"We have already put in place some key parts of a Welsh Treasury function in line with our priorities in the Wales Infrastructure Investment Plan.  This includes more strategic use of capital, improved assessment processes and the development and implementation of innovative financial arrangements.

"I am now looking forward to publication of the UK Government's response to the Silk Commission's recommendations in the Spring, which will clarify how this important work will be taken forward."