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Omicron Covid-19 Variant

Volume 706: debated on Wednesday 5 January 2022

10. What recent discussions he has had with the Welsh Government on the impact on Wales of the omicron covid-19 variant. (904904)

The UK Government have worked closely with the Welsh Government throughout the pandemic. We continue to do so in tackling the omicron variant, and Ministers in both Governments are in regular discussions.

With Labour Welsh Government Ministers now introducing fines to try to stop people going to their workplaces, with the crazy decision to prohibit parkruns at this time and with the Welsh hospitality sector effectively under lockdown through new year, does my right hon. Friend share my deep concern that, yet again, Wales faces the most burdensome and most intrusive restrictions in any part of the United Kingdom? Does he agree that these measures are driven more by fear and pessimism than by good science?

My right hon. Friend and constituency neighbour makes a good point. I might have found myself disagreeing with him if it could be demonstrated that the results of covid controls in Wales are in some way better than the results in the rest of the UK, but they are not. It is absurd that the popular parkrun in his own town of Haverfordwest cannot take place and that people cannot watch rugby from the touchline, but they can cram into a club where they ought not to be. That is nonsense. It is throttling the recovery and it is throttling economic activity.