Live updates

70 jobs to be created at packaging company in Newport

Specialist packaging company, Essentra plc, is expanding its operations in Newport and creating 70 new jobs.

The development will be on Imperial Park in Newport. Credit: Welsh Government

The latest investment, backed by £143,000 business finance from the Welsh Government, will see the company more than double staff numbers as it takes over an adjacent 225,000 sq. ft. site on Imperial Park.

As a global leading provider of specialist pharmaceutical, health & personal care and consumer goods packaging, Essentra’s objective is to remain at the forefront of these industries, in terms of continuing to provide our customers with a comprehensive product offering, compelling value proposition and excellent customer service.

Our further substantial additional investment in Newport will extend the capability and capacity of the existing site, as a centre of excellence for the manufacture and future development of our extensive range of innovative packaging, and will ensure that we are optimally positioned to continue to meet the exacting requirements of our customers.

– Hugh Ross, Managing Director, Europe, Essentra
The jobs will be in the specialist packaging industry. Credit: Welsh Government


HMRC hopes most Welsh workers will stay with the service

HMRC says it hopes as many Welsh workers as possible will continue to work within the service.

It comes as HMRC announces that it will close all four offices in Wales and open a new regional centre in Cardiff, employing up to 3,800 people.

Jonathan Lloyd White is a Director at HMRC told Political Editor Adrian Masters that he realises the news will be worrying to employees.

Welsh Government slams HMRC 'double whammy'

The Welsh Government says the Prime Minister should do 'everything in his power to avoid compulsory redundancies' in HMRC offices in Wales.

A spokesman criticised HMRC for causing uncertainty and affecting areas such as Porthmadog which will see its office close.

The First Minister wrote to the Prime Minister last year expressing serious concern when HMRC announced its decision to close its offices in Carmarthen, Colwyn Bay, Merthyr Tydfil and Pembroke Dock last year, with the loss of over 100 good quality jobs.

This is now a double whammy, and as well as the uncertainty caused for staff, it will have a disproportionate effect in an area such as Porthmadog. We will be calling on the Prime Minister to do everything in his power to avoid compulsory redundancies.

– Welsh Government spokesperson


Dwr Cymru Welsh Water 'delivers £123m investment'

Credit: Rui Vieira/PA Wire

Dwr Cymru Welsh Water has announced its half-year results.

The not-for-profit company says it's delivered £123 million of investment in the six months to September.

It has over 3 million customers across much of Wales, Herefordshire and parts of Deeside.

We have continued to invest significantly in our services in recent months to achieve industry-leading levels of customer satisfaction and trust. With our vision to earn the trust of our customers every day, our only focus is making decisions that always benefit customers and ensure value for money for customers now and for years to come. Our latest investment ensures that we can continue to deliver the most essential of public services whilst we have a real lasting impact on the communities we serve

– Chris Jones, Dwr Cymru Welsh Water Chief Executive
  1. Nick Powell

Welsh farm workers to get 6% rise

The Welsh Government is using powers it gained after a legal battle with the UK government to increase minimum wages for farm workers by 6%. It's their first increase since 2012 and means that most farm workers, on the standard grade, will see their hourly rate go up from £6.96 an hour to £7.38.

The minimum rate will be £6.72 -that's 2p more than the National Living Wage, which the UK government will introduce next year. The top rate, the minimum for farm managers, will go up from £9.40 an hour to £9.96.

[It] recognises the unique nature of agricultural work ... rewards skills and qualifications ... underpins the Welsh Government’s vision of a modern, professional and profitable agriculture industry in Wales, and the importance of having well-motivated,well-trained and appropriately remunerated workers.

– Deputy minister for Farming Rebecca Evans AM

The old pay rates were set for England and Wales under legislation that was repealed by the UK government, prompting the Welsh Government to introduce a Wales-only law. That led to a legal battle in the Supreme Court, which gave a landmark ruling on the extent of devolved powers.

The draft Wales Bill proposed by the Welsh Secretary, Stephen Crabb, specifically preserves the devolved power over agricultural wages. The Assembly's Presiding officer, Dame Rosemary Butler, has warned that it would prevent similar Wales-only legislation for workers in other areas, such as the care sector, for which the Welsh Government is responsible.

Load more updates