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Wales has the weakest economy of all UK nations and regions

Statistics released yesterday show Wales recorded lower Gross Value Added (GVA) per head than Scotland, Northern Ireland, and the nine English regions.

In 2017, GVA per head in Wales was £19,899, £28,096 in England, £25,485 in Scotland, and £21,172 in Northern Ireland. Wales has been bottom of the national table for the last 21 consecutive years. The UK’s GVA per head is £27,555.

GVA per head in Wales also grew by less than the other UK nations at only 2.7% over the year whereas it grew by 2.9% in England, 2.8% in Scotland, and 3.1% in Northern Ireland. GVA per head grew by 3% across the UK.

Anglesey registered a GVA per head of £13,957, the sixth lowest-ranking NUTS3 region in the entire UK, followed by the Gwent Valleys on £15,062.

The data also showed that Welsh GVA as a percentage of the UK’s has shrank since Welsh Labour came into government at the dawn of devolution in 1999, shrinking from 73.7% to 72.9% in 2017.

The news comes not long after average earnings in Wales were revealed to be lower and having grown slower than other UK nations in the last year, and all but one English region.

Welsh Conservative and Shadow Economy Secretary Russell George AM said:

“For over two decades, Wales has had the lowest GVA of all UK nations, which only goes to reflect the Welsh Labour Government’s damning economic record.

“The Welsh Labour Government have a lack of vision for how to energise our nation’s economy. Their economic strategy, Prosperity for All, has no significant ideas or proposals.

“Wales has been let down by Welsh Labour for too long. We have the lowest GVA, worst productivity, and the smallest and slowest growing wage packets of the UK nations.

“We may have a new First Minister in Wales, but only a Welsh Conservative Government can change the economic fortunes of our country.”