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Overnight trips 'up on last year', tourism figures show

More visitors are coming to Wales and, per person, they are spending more than last year.

That is according to the second annual report on tourism.

Credit: Neil Squires/PA Images

During the first quarter of 2015 the total volume of overnight trips to Wales was 1.62 million That's up by 7 per cent up in comparison with the first three months of 2014.

In January-April 2015, average spend per day trip in Wales was higher than the average in the first four months of 2014.

In 2015, 46 cruise ships are scheduled to visit Wales – a 94% increase year on year, with 22,500 passengers and an economic impact of £2.9 million.

Tourism in Wales is in a strong position. Two years into the ambitious tourism strategy, ‘Partnership for Growth’ we are seeing that public sector leadership and support, driven by private-sector investment and innovation, is helping to put Wales ahead of the competition.

– Ken Skates AM, Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism

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Chancellor to deliver first Tory Budget since 1996

Credit: PA

The Chancellor, George Osborne, will deliver the summer Budget later today.

It's the first Budget to be delivered by a Conservative government since 1996.

The Budget is expected to reflect many of the policies outlined in the Tory manifesto.

George Osborne is expected to include policies on:

  • Raising the 40p tax threshold to £50,000
  • Inheritance tax threshold will increase to £1m for couples by 2017
  • Benefits cap per household will fall to £20,000
  • Sunday trading laws to be extended to more than six hours
  • Reform to welfare benefits including tax credits

Jobs growth in Wales 'half as fast as UK overall'

A new study has found that Wales is creating jobs two times slower than the UK as a whole and four times slower than London.

Credit: ITV Wales news

Research by Wales TUC shows that between 2010 - 2014 jobs growth in Wales was 2.7% nearly half the rate of the UK which has a jobs growth rate of 5.1%.

Despite Wales' economy growing faster than the UK average, the study found that this hasn't delivered a boost in jobs that other regions have seen and Wales is second from bottom in the table of nations and regions.

Without better wages, the Welsh economy simply cannot thrive.

Communities in Wales facing longstanding problems including in-work poverty, higher unemployment and long term unemployment rates should be prioritised for major new investment and public contracts to turn this problem around.

Recent new powers for Wales mean that more targeted support for jobs can be committed to those communities to help mitigate the unjust hardship caused by austerity.

– Martin Mansfield, Wales TUC General Secretary

Cricket brings "£24 million" to the Cardiff area

Cardiff's economy is set to benefit to the tune of £24m during 2015, thanks to the first Investec Ashes Test being held at the SWALEC stadium next week.

The SSE SWALEC Stadium in Cardiff where the Ashes test will be held on Friday, July 10. Credit: PA

Previous research by Cardiff Metropolitan University has shown that international cricket and related events can bring in around £19m to the regional economy.

But the addition of the first Investec Ashes Test in 2015 is likely to boost cricket's economic contribution to Cardiff by a further £5m.

We are proud of being able to bring world class cricket events to the Welsh capital in recent years.

The First Investec Ashes Test of 2015 being played in Cardiff enables us to provide a truly global sporting occasion that can be enjoyed by fans not only in Wales but across the world.

The SSE SWALEC is attracting major events to the Cardiff Capital Region – events that can help sustain a significant number of jobs in the hospitality and tourism sector.

– Hugh Morris, Chief Executive of Glamorgan County Cricket Club

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Welsh firms get inside track on HS2 contract bids

Welsh businesses find out today how to bid for contracts worth around £10bn from Britain's largest infrastructure project.

A high speed train using HS1, the Channel Tunnel. Credit: Gareth Fuller/PA Wire

HS2 is the high speed railway initially linking Birmingham and London.

Today HS2 Ltd's senior management team are in Cardiff.

"The HS2 team are laying down their marker now, looking for suppliers throughout the UK to support the first phase of HS2 between London and Birmingham and we have a range of suppliers in Wales that can add value to the project. Good suppliers, with a track record of excellent service, products and expertise"

– Edwina Hart AM, Economy Minister
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