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'Inaccuracies' lead to further Circuit of Wales delays

Artist's Impression of proposed Circuit of Wales.

The Welsh Government have identified 'material gaps and inaccuracies' in the Circuit of Wales application, according to Cabinet Secretary for Economy and Infrastructure Ken Skates.

The company behind the Circuit of Wales project have asked for a £210m taxpayer-funded guarantee.

As a result of the concerns raised, the Welsh Government have extended the deadline to allow the company to address them..

I will be making a written statement on progress in the coming week. In the meantime I can confirm that since my announcement in March my officials and the appointed external advisors have been progressing the project, but the due diligence process identified many material gaps and inaccuracies in the information contained within the Circuit of Wales application.

Consequently, we set an extended and final deadline for the Company to address these gaps. Within the last week final submissions have been received that officials have confirmed will allow completion of the due diligence analysis. This further delay has meant the timescale asset in March has slipped. I am advised that the remaining process will take a final few weeks, following which Cabinet will consider the project as soon as is practicably possible.

– Ken Skates AM,


House sales in Wales rise faster than anywhere else in the UK

Credit: PA

House sales in Wales have risen faster than anywhere else in the UK.

Welsh house prices are rising too, bucking the trend elsewhere, according to the latest Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) survey.

New sales rose at the fastest rate in four months in Wales, while prices last month were at their highest level since mid-2014.

We are seeing rising numbers of people registering to buy, but in March there were fewer properties than I would expect coming onto the market for that time of year.

In our experience, sales activity is good, particularly in the £250,000 - £350,000 price range, due to demand exceeding supply. This is putting upward pressure on prices.

– Tony Filice, RICS Wales residential spokesperson

Average house price in Wales reaches new high of £174,319

Credit: PA images

The average house price in Wales has reached a new high of £174,319 during the first quarter of the year.

The figures come from the Principality's first house price index for Wales.

It also found that the annual rate of growth is at its lowest for four years.

The slow rate of growth is being put down to what the building society has called an 'exceptional three-month period' from January to March this year, where house prices across the country climbed ahead of the introduction of the 3% surcharge in stamp duty on second homes and buy-to-let properties.

Average house prices have been climbing over the last four years and now stand 2.5% above the levels seen in the second half of 2007.

The upward movement in prices over this period has been assisted by low interest rates.

While the average house price in Wales has steadily climbed to reach a new high, there are signs that the market is cooling slightly. While higher employment, consumer confidence and low interest rates have helped to keep the market demand steady, a rise in the cost of living could result in house prices growing at a more modest rate during the rest of the year.

– Tom Denman, Interim Finance Director at Principality Building Society
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