The leader of Swansea Council says support from the UK Government for the world's first tidal lagoon project is "hugely significant" for the city.
Cllr Rob Stewart says Chancellor George Osborne’s Budget announcement about the proposal, which will be built in Swansea Bay, could be beneficial for the economy.
The Chancellor said discussions will now start in earnest, which will help take the £1bn proposal a step closer to fruition.
His announcement comes within months of the UK Government including the project in its National Infrastructure Plan.
This is a project that will help transform the Swansea Bay City Region’s economy and put Swansea on the map as an exemplar for renewable energy production.
It could also generate many hundreds of jobs for local people and further raise Swansea’s profile across the planet as a forward-thinking city of innovation. This isn’t just new technology for Swansea and the UK – it’s a world first that’s being proposed right on our doorstep.
Welsh Secretary Stephen Crabb also responded to the announcement in today's Budget, describing the lagoon project as a "once in a generation opportunity."
.@scrabb2015 'That is why I have spent the last two years in Government making the case for bringing tidal power to Wales.'
The Wales Office has confirmed that Seven Bridges tolls are expected to fall when the crossings return to public ownership because VAT would no longer be levied. The tax represents just over £1 of the present £6.50 toll for cars and more than £3 of the £19.60 paid by lorries. The Chancellor also announced that the present £13.10 for small vans and buses would be reduced to the same toll as is charged for cars.
Today's announcement is great news for small businesses but also for the many hardworking people in South Wales who cross the Severn Bridge every day for work. We are determined to do everything possible to support the Welsh economy by improving connectivity in all ways, from road to rail through to strong electronic links.
The private company that built the Second Severn Crossing will hand back the tolls when the construction costs have been paid off. That's now expected to happen in 2018.
More than 1.2 million people in Wales will see an average real term gain of more than £500, following George Osborne's announcement to raise the income tax threshold.
During the Budget speech, he said personal tax-free allowance will increase to £10,800 next year and £11,000 the year after.
Wales Office estimates that raising income tax threshold will take 167,000 people out of income tax altogether in Wales.
George Osborne's promise of a cut in the tolls on the Severn Bridges suggests that if he stays in office after the election he'll deny the Welsh Government control of the crossings when they return to public ownership. First Minister Carwyn Jones has said that if he had the power, he would reduce but not abolish the tolls, using the income to pay for M4 improvements as wells as maintaining the two bridges.
Chancellor George Osborne has announced that the UK government is "opening negotiations on the Swansea Bay tidal lagoon."
The Chancellor also said "We are giving more power to Wales. We are working on a Cardiff city deal" - but with no more detail.
Toll rates for the Severn Crossing will be reduced from 2018, George Osborne has announced.
"Severn crossings are a vital link for Wales - we will reduce the toll rates from 2018 and abolish the higher band for small vans and buses."
The Chancellor has gone further to say that Severn Bridges tolls for vans will be cut from £13 to £5.40 to help small traders.
More on the Severn Tolls. According to the Wales Office HGVs and buses will pay £16.30 from 2018, down from current £19.60.
Chancellor George Osborne has announced more funding for air ambulances around the UK during his Budget speech.
He announced support to help charities buy new helicopters including Wales, Essex and Herts, East Anglia and Scotland which will be paid for from LIBOR fines.
Chancellor George Osborne is delivering his sixth annual budget in the House of Commons today.
And with reports suggesting the government has seen a £6 billion windfall, he is expected to announce a number of tax cuts designed to boost the Tories' pre-election campaign.
This broadcast has now finished.
In a statement released ahead of his Budget, Chancellor George Osborne has vowed to deliver a Budget that will help create a "truly national recovery".
Today we set out the next stage in a plan that is working, with a Budget that works for you. We will deliver a truly national recovery