THE RECENT announcement of a £50 million investment programme from the UK Government to support the economic growth of businesses in the northern valleys of South East Wales has drawn positive reactions from opposition politicians.

The investment, which was unveiled today, Thursday, April 11, has been set up by Cardiff Capital Region (CCR) and supported by a Local Authority Delivery Team from each of the local authority areas it will affect, namely Blaenau Gwent, Torfaen, Caerphilly Bridgend, Merthyr Tydfil and Rhondda Cynon Taf.  

This will support businesses and projects that have the ability to increase prosperity in the region.

Investments will be focussed on businesses that offer high-growth potential and the ability to help transform the regional economy.

Commenting on the announcement of this investment, leader of the Welsh Conservatives,  Andrew RT Davies MS  said: “This is exceptional news for the people of Wales, this substantial investment will invigorate growth in areas Labour has left behind.

“While the Labour Welsh Government hammers the Welsh economy by billions of pounds with barmy 20mph speed limits and crippling business rate rises, the UK Conservative Government are delivering for the people of Wales.”

Welsh Conservative Shadow Economy Minister, Paul Davies MS added: “This large package of support is welcome at a time when people and businesses across Wales have had to suffer with Labour’s lack of ambition, absence of jobs targets and failure to grow the Welsh economy.

“This programme from the UK Conservative Government will boost Wales’s infrastructure, digital connectivity and tourism sectors to get Wales moving.”

Operating over a five-year period, the fund will support businesses that are either based in the region or that wish to relocate for the long term. Grants and investments targeted between £100k- £2m will be available for successful applicants.

The programme will concentrate on infrastructure, digital connectivity and tourism sectors delivering a wide range of outcomes including jobs, ecological regeneration and de-carbonisation.

The Northern Valleys initiative aligns with the CCR’s Region Economic Plan of 2023-28 to tackle economic disparities and boost growth, enhance innovation capability and capacity, decarbonise our environment by 2050 and improve Wales’s physical and digital infrastructure.