In the past year, the employment rate in Wales has reached a record high. Wales benefits particularly from thriving tourism, which, with the help of UK Government initiatives, such as the coastal communities fund, grew by a massive 36% last year. Ten per cent. of Welsh workers are now directly employed in tourism—up from 7% in 2014.
The Wales Office is committed to maintaining the employment growth stats that we have experienced in Wales in the past seven years. The investment that the Secretary of State mentioned from Aston Martin is a fine example of our ability to attract investment into Wales that will create high-quality jobs.
There will be more HMRC jobs in Wales as a result of the reorganisation than is currently the case. I assure the hon. Gentleman that the situation in Wales is one of employment growth—99,000 more jobs than in 2010, and 119,000 more jobs in the private sector. The employment story in Wales is a success of which the hon. Gentleman should be proud.
Today’s important report from the Institute for Public Policy Research provides a damning indictment of direct Westminster rule over the Welsh economy. Does the Minister agree that the only solution is greater economic powers for Wales?
The hon. Gentleman is like a stuck record on this issue. Rather than citing reports from high-flown companies, he should highlight the real, on-the-ground success story: unemployment in Wales is falling and fewer people are dependent on welfare. We are creating jobs and a successful economy in Wales. The hon. Gentleman should celebrate that.