Bevan Foundation welcomes Welsh Affairs Committee report on the Shared Prosperity Fund

Economy A union jack and EU flag
NewsOctober 2nd, 2020

The Bevan Foundation has welcomed the report of the House of Commons Welsh Affairs Select committee on the Shared Prosperity Fund (SPF) and priorities for replacing EU structural funding in Wales.

The report quotes from written evidence submitted by the Bevan Foundation on several aspects of its inquiry, including our assessment of the impact of previous rounds of structural funds, the economic challenges facing Wales, including places that have experienced the complete closure of key industries and that have suffered disproportionately in successive economic downturns, and the importance of using existing expertise in Wales in the transition between EU and UK derived funding.

The report echoes our view that the SPF must, amongst other things be used to help bolster skills and improve wages in Wales. Amongst its other recommendations are:

  • The UK Government must work with the devolved government of Wales to agree priorities for the Shared Prosperity Fund and to co-create the details regarding how the Fund will work. It must provide evidence of progress being made in October ahead of finalising arrangements during November.
  • The UK Government must honour its commitment to maintain at least the current levels of real-term funding to Wales and to consider the arguments for increased spending.
  • UK Government and Welsh Governments should learn the lessons from how EU funds have been administered under the ESI schemes, including on levels of accessibility and bureaucracy
  • The UK Government should work with the devolved administrations and local government to build a partnership approach and provide a guarantee of genuine joint working and engagement for all stakeholders.

These recommendations and others were informed by our submission to the inquiry and we hope the UK government takes them into account in developing the Shared Prosperity Fund


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