The Welsh Government will receive a minimum of £1.1 billion in additional funding this year, on top of £2.9 billion confirmed since March to help provide support following the coronavirus pandemic, the UK Government has announced.
The unprecedented upfront guarantee – which will take the total amount of coronavirus funding guaranteed to the Welsh Government to a minimum of £4 billion for 2020/21 on top of their Spring Budget funding – will give the devolved administration the certainty and financial flexibility to plan for the months ahead.
Any changes to the devolved administrations funding are normally confirmed at the end of the financial year, but today’s guarantee means they have the certainty to spend this funding now, on priorities such as the NHS and additional business support.
This funding is on top of the Spending Round 2019 settlement which was the biggest day-to-day funding increase in a decade.
Commenting on the unprecedented announcement, Wrexham’s MP, Sarah Atherton said:
“Throughout this pandemic the UK Government has shown unwavering support in protecting individuals, jobs and our economy. This announcement is yet another sign of support for the Union and commitment to securing an economic recovery for the whole of the United Kingdom.
“This means that the Welsh Government will have the certainty they need to plan their own support schemes over the next few months.”
People and businesses in the Welsh Government, will also continue to benefit from the UK Government’s world-leading package of support to protect the economy, including the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, Self-Employment Income Support Scheme, Coronavirus Business Interruption Loans and Bounce Back Loans. So far this has provided millions of pounds of support to business in Wales during the crisis – protecting jobs and livelihoods.
To date, more than 480,000 jobs in Wales have been supported through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme.
Wales has also benefitted from the measures set out in the Plan for Jobs, including the Job Retention Bonus, funding to decarbonise public sector buildings, a demonstrator project to decarbonise social housing and funding to support research and development for Direct Air Capture, and VAT cuts for hospitality and tourism, as well as a Eat Out to Help Out discount scheme.
The UK Government is committed to strengthening the Union between England and Wales, rebuilding vital connections with all parts of the UK and spreading opportunity.