More funding and fairness for Wales, says Plaid

More funding and fairness for Wales, says Plaid

32 minutes agoBy Daniel Davies, Political correspondent, BBC Wales NewsBBCPlaid Cymru leader Rhun ap Iorwerth says Labour does not offer “meaningful change”

Wales needs more funding and “economic fairness” from Westminster, Plaid Cymru has said ahead of its general election manifesto launch later.

Party leader Rhun ap Iorwerth said the general election was “about one thing – the economy”.

He said Labour did not offer “meaningful change” after 14 years of “Tory cuts and chaos”.

Plaid’s manifesto, which is being launched in Cardiff, calls for the Welsh Parliament to have more power over natural resources and funding for public transport.

Getty ImagesPlaid says Wales is owed billions as a result of UK government spending on the HS2 railway from London to the West Midlands

Wales is owed “billions” as a result of UK government spending on the HS2 railway from London to the West Midlands, Plaid said.

It is also calling for changes to how the Welsh government’s budget is set in Westminster so funding matches Wales’ needs.

The party also wants control over the Crown Estate to be devolved so profits from its properties go to the government in Cardiff, not the UK Treasury.

All parties in the Senedd say the Welsh government’s budget should be topped up as a result of HS2.

But, under the Conservatives, the UK government has refused to classify the project in a way that would release more funding for Wales – and Labour has also not pledged to do so.

In March, Sir Keir Starmer said a Labour government would have to “review that and make decisions when we are able to”.

Rishi Sunak has said money saved from cancelling the next phase of HS2 would be spent on electrifying the north Wales main line.

Mr ap Iorwerth said: “We will fight every day for the billions owed to Wales from the HS2 high-speed rail project and for a fair funding model which funds our country according to need, not population.

“On 4 July, we can send a message that Wales won’t be taken for granted any longer and that’s only by electing a strong group of Plaid Cymru MPs that will always demand fairness for their square mile and put Wales’ best interests first in Westminster.”

After boundary changes, Plaid is defending two constituencies: Dwyfor Meirionnydd and Ceredigion Preseli.

It also hopes to fend off Labour and the Conservatives to gain another two target seats: Caerfyrddin and Ynys Mon.

Mr ap Iorwerth was appointed Plaid leader last June when his predecessor Adam Price stood down after a damning report into allegations of misogyny within the party.

Last month he led his party out of a co-operation agreement with Vaughan Gething’s Welsh Labour government.

The party voted against First Minister Mr Gething in a no-confidence vote this month.

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