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04/01/2019

OECD drafted in to help work up Welsh economic blueprint

Words: Roger Milne
Wales / Shutterstock_620434919

Welsh ministers have announced that the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has been commissioned to support the development of a regional economic development blueprint for Wales.

The Paris-based experts will use their extensive international experience of regional economic development to advise the Welsh Government as it implements its new economic action plan and develops plans for regional investment in Wales after Brexit.

This initiative should help ensure that Wales’s future regional economic development model embodies international best practice. International experts will visit Wales to discuss regional economic challenges and opportunities. This in turn will help the Welsh Government develop a new toolkit for action as well as clear international benchmarks to monitor performance.

The OECD has provided advice to the Welsh Government before, when in 2014 it produced a major report to help improve schools in Wales. In subsequent years it has also supported work on schools’ reform.

Minister for economy and transport Ken Skates said: “Our new economic action plan is a major public policy reform and I want to ensure we receive the very best advice and strongest international challenge to help us achieve our economic ambitions.

“The changes we have outlined through the economic action plan to boost regional economies across Wales are profound, as is our ambition for stronger regional partnership working in Wales to boost inclusive and sustainable growth. There is no one better to help us deliver this than the OECD.

“We have asked the OECD to advise us on ways to strengthen regional economic governance, build capacity, and support more joined up economic policymaking, including through developing a practical toolkit for both us and our partners to use to support those changes.”

Jeremy Miles, minister for Brexit, said: “Our project with the OECD will play an important part in Wales’s development of the right policy and structures for a successor regional investment approach to replace EU regional funds, closely aligned to our economic action plan.

“We are not looking to simply replicate the EU model in Wales, and are committed to creating a new, made-in-Wales approach that reflects international best practice, builds on Wales’s distinctive legislative and policy landscape, and delivers for our people, businesses and communities.”

Image credit | Shutterstock

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