Despite repeatedly saying they’ll do all they can, Labour Ministers still haven’t used the tools at their disposal to assist the Welsh steel industry, the Welsh Liberal Democrats have said.
Eluned Parrott AM and other members of the Assembly’s Enterprise and Business Committee heard today from industry and union representatives that very little progress had been made by either the UK or Welsh Governments on their 5-point plan for steel.
A written statement was released today by the Labour Economy Minister which contained no reference to scrapping business rates on plant and machinery, a key Welsh Lib Dem call and a lever at the Welsh Government’s disposal.
Eluned Parrott AM, the Welsh Liberal Democrat Shadow Economy Minister, said:
“Time and time again we hear from Labour Ministers that they’re doing all they can to help our struggling steel industry, yet we’ve still seen no concrete action on the issues that lie in the Welsh Government’s hands.
“Scrapping business rates on plant and machinery is one thing this Labour Government should push ahead with urgently. Welsh Lib Dems first suggested this in 2014, yet many months later there’s no obvious progress from Labour.
“Even on the issue of public procurement, only today do we hear that a review is being conducted. Welsh steel needs our help now, and these matters can’t be booted into the long grass and left on the doorstep of the next Welsh Government.
“Summits and warm words are simply not enough. Too much time has already been wasted, and we need to see positive action now.”