Despite the promises of more money for Wales if Labour in Westminster actually implement the Mansion Tax, the Institute for Fiscal Studies has forecast that Labour’s plans will in fact lead to real term cuts. Perhaps it’s time for Labour to come clean and admit that they plan to cut the Welsh Budget.
Plaid Cymru has rightly warned voters not to be deceived by the Labour party’s spin. For while Labour has been talking about raising money through a mansion tax, they have already signed up to plans that will cut more than a billion pounds from Wales’ economy.
Labour has already confirmed that previously that it will stick to the Con Dem plan to cut departmental spending by over £1.5bn across the UK. This lower base for expenditure means that Wales will lose an additional £365 million over the next five years compared with 2014-15.
The IFS has estimated (March 2015) that starting this year (2015) Wales and the other devolved administrations will end up losing 2.2 per cent of their funding in real terms by the end of the next parliament leading to a cumulative, real terms loss for Wales of £835 million. Taken together Labour will cut funding to Wales by £1.2bn (£365m plus £835m) in real terms over the coming five years.
Despite Labour’s belated acknowledgement that Wales is underfunded, Labour still intend to make yet deeper cuts into the Welsh budget. Once again Labour are trying to pull the wool over our eyes by claiming that they will put more money into Wales’ economy while signing off spending plans that will cut more than £1 billion from Wales. This is a classic case of giving with one hand and taking away with the other.
Plaid Cymru is the only party in Wales making the case to stop austerity and to grow our economy. We also want Wales to be funded to the same level as Scotland. Plaid Cymru’s economic plans are focused on growing Wales’ economy. We need to invest to create jobs, increase our tax intake and bring down the deficit. We need to close the gap between the rich and the poor and we are the only party focused on rebalancing power and wealth throughout the UK.