Only smarter public spending decisions will ensure lasting recovery from recession - Kirsty Williams

2010 Ionawr 28 10:25 AM

Commenting on the news that 18 months of UK economic recession has ended, the Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats, Kirsty Williams says the possibility of a second stage of recession is too high for Welsh Government to ignore.

"We need to treat any announcement of an end to recession with extreme caution. This news means the UK economy is beginning to climb out of a very deep hole, not that we are out of that hole yet.

"After 367 days of recession, Welsh families are suffering, tens of thousands more workers are now on the dole and child poverty in Wales has reached crisis point. The Labour-Plaid Government will be slapping themselves on the back but Wales is now one of the weakest economies in Europe.

"The slashing of education and training budgets will mean that we are all the more vulnerable to another downturn when it comes. Wales is also heavily dependent on the public sector to provide employment and as we know, public spending is set to slow down rapidly after the general election.

"The Welsh Liberal Democrats believe it is effective management of public finances that will define Welsh economic prospects over the coming years. Our priority is to reverse spending cuts in education by using surplus Health funding. We would limit all public sector pay rises to £400 and provide job-creating fiscal stimulus to the real economy as part of a £3.5bn package across the UK."

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