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Great Western Cities Devolution

Volume 597: debated on Wednesday 17 June 2015

10. What discussions he has had with the leaders of Newport, Cardiff and Bristol councils on the great western cities devolution proposal. (900279)

Last week I brought together council leaders from across the Cardiff capital region to hear their views on an emerging vision for an ambitious city deal for Cardiff that will create new economic opportunities for the wider area, including the great western cities region.

I thank the Secretary of State for his response, but obviously my concern is Bristol rather than Cardiff. How does he see a cross-border initiative such as this fitting in with the agenda for city regions, combined authorities and everything else that is going on?

I am clear that my priority is Cardiff and not Bristol, but having a strong Cardiff capital region supported by an ambitious city deal will provide opportunities for both cities. That represents good news for Wales and for the hon. Lady’s constituency.

I know that the Secretary of State shares my excitement about the Cardiff city deal. It has huge potential for Cardiff and it really will deliver for south Wales. Does he share my view that all parties should come together constructively to ensure that Cardiff does not miss out on this opportunity of a generation?

I agree with my hon. Friend, and I pay tribute to him for the leadership that he has shown in driving forward a Cardiff city deal proposal. I am clear in my mind that a Cardiff city deal will work only with the Welsh Government, the UK Government, local partners and, crucially, the business community all working together.