§ 11. Mr. Gwilym Jones
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will make a statement on the progress of securing inward investment for Wales.
§ Mr. David Hunt
For inward investment, the 12 months ending March 1991 was a record year with 147 projects secured, promising 15,000 new and safeguarded jobs and an investment of £585 million.
I have recently returned from what I believe to have been a successful inward investment mission to north America, following which I was able to announce a further four projects. I expect a number of other projects to flow from the visit.
§ Mr. Jones
My right hon. Friend could be forgiven for being somewhat exasperated at the way in which, every time he announces good news, the Luddite left in the Opposition reacts most contemptuously to it. Is not this the opportunity to say that Wales has been very successful in securing inward investment? Would my right hon. Friend care to suggest why he and everybody else involved in securing that investment have been so successful?
§ Mr. Hunt
I suppose it is because Opposition Members are trying to make party political points that they do not recognise the important progress that has been made. Since January alone, I have been able to announce support by the Welsh Office for more than 4,500 new jobs and nearly £352 million of investment for the Principality. I believe that the figures represent not just our outstanding record in attracting investment and jobs from overseas, but the setting up and expansion of many home-grown 640 businesses. With the partnership that we have in Wales, I am confident that we will continue that winning record into the mid-1990s and beyond.