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First Minister criticises Autumn Statement blaming "failed austerity"

The First Minister has criticised Wednesday's Autumn statement blaming what he calls "failed austerity".

Credit: PA Wire

Speaking to the Sunday Times Carwyn Jones said it lacked any plans to support the Welsh steel industry or Swansea's tidal lagoon.

He also said the UK Government needed to start working more constructively with other nations.

Chancellor Phillip Hammond announced an increase in the national minimum wage, and an extra £400 million pound boost for the Welsh government to spend on infrastructure projects like buildings and roads.

Phillip Hammond delivered his Autumn Statement last Wednesday Credit: PA

This week delivered the forbidding economic news that £60bn had been wiped off the UK growth forecasts over the next five years as a result of the Tories’ toxic combination of failed austerity and referendum bungling.

I think Wednesday was the moment it hit home to many, including some on the Conservative benches, just how much trouble the government is now in, and there’s little sign of a route map to recovery.No Marshall Plan, no New Deal, just a bumpy Brexit and few new ring roads.

With austerity failing, debt spiralling and investor confidence being eaten away, it’s clear that sound bites won’t cut it. The fabled “long-term economic plan” has failed, the deficit target has been abandoned and the government has nothing left in the political, intellectual or economic playbooks to soften the post-Brexit landing.

In Wales there are serious projects on the waiting list that could help stimulate growth, but we heard too little about the proposed Swansea City Deal; nothing on the tidal lagoon project; and most crucially of all, no comprehensive plan to support the Welsh steel industry by tackling high energy prices.

– First Minister Carwyn Jones, speaking to The Sunday Times

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