ONS statement by Matthew MacKinnon, Director of the Centre for Welsh Studies:

“The long term implications for the UK economy are stark, with Covid-19 and lockdown bringing the largest proportionate annual increase in debt since the second world war.

We are concerned that politicians may promote a tax and spend policy to help the economy recover, we believe that adding more pressure to an already stretched public would not be an effective economic strategy.

Here in Wales the Welsh Government can use some of it’s levers to ensure our economy bounces back at a more rapid pace than currently projected. Changes to business rates would be a good start. With business struggling, business rates should be cut, especially in towns that were shown to be most at risk from the economic fallout.

We can not tax our way out of a dire economic situation such as this. We need a strong economy to grow in order to ensure our public sector and people are protected. Let us not fear business and entrepreneurship, but embrace it.”