6/8/2015 11:08:13 AM
Wales must unite with business community to win, according to Welsh Secretary
Stephen Crabb, Welsh Secretary, has thrown down the gauntlet posed to rival political parties in order to rid Wales of tribalism, advocating a united front with the business community. Crabb is keen to obtain infrastructure investment to enable both economic growth and increased jobs across Wales.
The MP of Preseli Pembrokeshire insists the Tory government is set on reversing the UK’s economic dependence on London and South East of England. However, he stressed the importance of cross-border collaboration between the UK and Welsh governments in order to win investment for the country as a whole.
The Welsh Secretary said: “I have this hope of taking some of the day-to-day tribal politics out of devolution in Wales. Actually, we should be doing that for infrastructure. We should unite as a nation around a long-term vision of infrastructure that Wales needs so that regardless of which shade of party is in power in Cardiff or Westminster there is a long-term plan for strategic infrastructure investment that is supported by the Welsh business community and supported by different levers and arms of Government.”
Stephen Crabb cited Whitehall and Cardiff’s strong working relationship to demonstrate that his hopes for Wales may well become reality. He said: “We’ve worked well together on electrification in the last year, the funding deal on M4 improvement; we know the Welsh Government have been supportive of what we’re trying to do with the investment in the prison in North Wales.”
Looking ahead to the 2016 Assembly elections Crabb predicts Labour’s poor record on the NHS could be a focal point of the campaign, stating the party could face a ‘massive’ battering from voters, especially in traditional Labour strongholds such as the Valleys. He insists the Tories are making inroads among working-class voters and that Labour should prepare for a devastating blow of Scottish proportions.
He believes the working-class vote, especially from self-employed and skilled Welsh workers, is critical to the success of, not just the Conservatives, but the Welsh economy too. Crabb stated that if working-class voters put their faith in a Tory government the economy would be propelled to new heights under their stewardship.“We are absolutely winning back that coalition of voters who supported Margaret Thatcher and the Conservative Government through the 1980s. When you have self-employed plumbers and chippies and electricians to a man and a woman saying they are voting Conservative because they back the people who go out to work, who want to work hard and make money, you show, then, that you are on the right side of the economic arguments and you are on the right side of the moral arguments as well.”