pollitician : 'Fair funding' for Wales call at heart of Plaid Cymru manifesto

pollitician : 'Fair funding' for Wales call at heart of Plaid Cymru manifesto
pollitician : 'Fair funding' for Wales call at heart of Plaid Cymru manifesto

Thursday 13 June 2024 10:46 PM

newsonline - A call for "fair funding" was at the heart of Plaid Cymru's general election manifesto launch in Cardiff on Thursday.

Dozens of party faithful gathered at the Temple of Peace in Cardiff to hear what leader Rhun ap Iorwerth had to say.

One of Plaid's key manifesto pledges is to secure £4bn of funding for Wales from the HS2 project.

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As this was classed as an England and Wales project by the UK government, Wales did not receive any funding via the Barnett Formula.

That's the term for how the Welsh government gets its money. So the more money spent on health in England, for example, the greater the funds received by Wales.

Plaid Cymru, which advocates Welsh independence, argues this should not have been classed as an England and Wales project as the HS2 will not enter the country.

The party says the additional funding would be used to improve Welsh public transport and reverse cuts to local bus services.

Plaid Cymru wants to see an increase in windfall tax and the devolution of the Crown Estate to Wales.

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There was a call, too, to rejoin the customs union and single market and for Wales to compete at the Eurovision Song Contest in its own right.

Mr ap Iorwerth said there was a "genuine sense that this election feels different".

"More people than ever are left utterly uninspired," he said.

He said Plaid Cymru was the only party calling for a change in how Wales receives its funding, including "scrapping" the Barnett Formula in favour of "a needs-based model".

He said the party's call for fair funding was not "driven by ideology, it's driven by principle".

Mr ap Iorwerth urged the next UK government to show they are "serious about Wales".

He said he was "proud" of the party's offer, which he said was "in Wales's interests".

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Speaking to Sky News after the manifesto launch, Mr ap Iorwerth refused to be drawn on the number of seats Plaid are aiming for.

"It's always about maximising the Welsh voice and in simple terms the more Welsh MPs from Plaid Cymru that are in Westminster, the less chance there is that we will be sidelined," he said.

"The number of MPs in Wales has been slashed from 40 to 32. That's a 20% cut in the number of MPs from Wales. The number of notional Plaid Cymru seats went down from four to two just by a direction of boundary changes."

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