'We take entirely the opposite view here in Wales'
Mark Drakeford has said Boris Johnson's belief that working from home does not work is "completely wrong."
The Prime Minister issued a renewed call for workers to return to their offices in an interview with the Daily Mail, saying staff were “more productive, more energetic, more full of ideas” when they are in the workplace alongside their colleagues.
“My experience of working from home is you spend an awful lot of time making another cup of coffee and then, you know, getting up, walking very slowly to the fridge, hacking off a small piece of cheese, then walking very slowly back to your laptop and then forgetting what it was you’re doing,” Mr Johnson told the newspaper.
Asked about those comments on Monday (May 16), Wales' First Minister said: "I think he's completely wrong. We take entirely the opposite view here in Wales.
"The way people have learnt to work flexibly during the pandemic is one of a small number of very good things that we need to take from it and apply into the future.
"We definitely here in Wales want to see a future in which people can blend times when they will work from home, times when they will be in the office. There is absolutely no case that says that people don't work hard unless they are under the gaze of a government."
The Prime Minister said he believed getting workers back into offices would drive up productivity.
“It will get our city centres moving in the weekdays and it will be good for mass transit", Mr Johnson said.
"And a lot of businesses that have been having a tough time will benefit from that.”
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But Mr Drakeford argued that workers spending their money closer to home would make the economic future of local communities "more vibrant".
He told ITV Wales News: "If people are able to work closer to home, not just in their own homes but in the hubs that we are creating in different parts of Wales, they still go out and spend, they still need to have something to eat, they still need to have a cup of coffee.
"But instead of all that being spent in one place, that spend is now dispersed into communities and will make the economic future of those communities more vibrant as a result."