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Techniums make loss of over £5.4 million since 2001

September 6, 2010 9:48 AM

New figures released by the Welsh Liberal Democrats have revealed that many of the Labour/Plaid governments flagship Technium projects have made massive losses. Freedom of Information requests have revealed a loss in excess of £5.4 million since 2001.

The Technium scheme was a flagship government project founded in 2001as an attempt to develop a series of sites where science and technology businesses could be nurtured.

Welsh Liberal Democrat Shadow Economy Minister, Jenny Randerson AM said:

Since 2001/02 ECM2 in Port Talbot has lost £2.2 million and so has Technium Cast in Bangor. The overall loss which is still significant masks huge losses for individual Techniums.

The Governments own Economic Advisory Council said that there was a lack of clear rationale and locality specific appraisal. There was also concern about the lack of interactivity with universities.

They would have been better to hand the money to universities to attract top academics. This would be a self perpetuating form of economic growth helping to create more organic clusters of expertise and innovation.

The Technium project needs to be completely reassessed. In July of this year over £1,500 was spent on a Technium Managers meeting so more and more good money is being thrown after bad. There are however a couple of successes which should not be thrown out with the many failed centres.

I am extremely angry at yet another example of Labour-Plaid waste when Welsh Universities are struggling to keep up with their English counterparts. Across the country, people are tightening their belts and the Labour/Plaid Government appears to have money to waste.

ENDS

Notes to editors: All figures are from FOI requests by the Office of Jenny Randerson AM