Welsh Conservatives pledge to create 65,000 new jobs as it launches manifesto

Watch the report by Owain Phillips

The Welsh Conservatives has pledged to create 65,000 new jobs in Wales if it were to be in government following May's Senedd election.

The launch of the party's manifesto was delayed following the death of His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh.

The Welsh Conservatives describe its manifesto as Wales' "national mission to get the economy on the road to recovery".

It says the creation of 65,000 new jobs will help to power Wales' economic recovery, with Welsh and UK governments, businesses, entrepreneurs and education providers 'working together' to achieve it. 

The Welsh Conservatives launched their manifesto for the Senedd elections in May. Credit: PA Images

The party also says that it is 'committed to cutting the basic level of income tax' at the end of the next Senedd term, once Wales hits this target.

It says its manifesto will help to 'deliver more jobs, hope and security for everyone' in Wales.

Other key party policies include abolishing business rates for small businesses and investing £2 billion to create modern infrastructure for Wales, including an M4 Relief Road, upgrades to the A55 and A40, and 20,000 green charging points.

The Welsh Conservatives also say it wants to deliver a "new deal" for North Wales and establish 'Innovate Wales', based in North Wales, which it describes as 'a one stop shop for firms to support new enterprises, and encourage existing businesses to grow and export'.

Welsh Conservative Leader, Andrew RT Davies said: "Over the past 12 months, the coronavirus crisis has tested our communities and public services beyond recognition, but we’ve seen the very best of Wales when everyone has worked together in the national interest. 

"As we move out of lockdown the next big challenge awaits, and we will need to undertake another critical national mission to get the economy on the road to recovery and create new jobs. 

"We are currently experiencing the deepest downturn since records began, and evidence shows that Welsh communities could be amongst the worst hit. We urgently need a plan for recovery and for jobs.

"Like Covid, our economic recovery is going to require a truly national effort, and if we are successful in delivering on our commitment of creating 65,000 new jobs it will be down to a true Team Wales approach - with businesses, entrepreneurs, government and the public sector working in unison."