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Wednesday, February 15, 2023

Skates calls for north Wales road decisions to move away from Cardiff

Clwyd South MS and former Welsh Transport Minister Ken Skates (pictured) has called for all decisions over the region’s roads to be devolved from Cardiff to North Wales. 

In a statement demanding clarity and action from the Welsh Government, Mr Skates said decisions over all roads – major and minor – should be made in the north. 

At present, decisions over whether to improve the A483, A55, A494 and A5 are made in Cardiff. Mr Skates wants those decisions to be made in North Wales – with funding also handed to the north. 

He said: “We need certainty over how transport in North Wales will be improved.I’ve been Minister for Transport and Economy. The two roles are now split, but they are both incredibly demanding. Having that experience, I firmly believe that decisions over roads, buses, rail and active travel are best made at a regional level. It’s time to devolve to the North, beginning with our major roads.” 

Mr Skates also said decisions and funding over rail improvements in North Wales should be devolved to the region from Westminster. 

He added: “At the moment, those decisions and the funding that accompanies them sit with UK Government. At the very least, should we succeed in getting a consequential of HS2 expenditure, then it should allocated fairly to the North on a track mile basis.We need to be in charge of our own transport system here in North Wales. Both Cardiff and London need to hand over the powers and funding to enable us to take charge and deliver for our citizens.” 

Mr Skates welcomed assurances from the Welsh Government that it would not turn its back on the steel, car, aerospace and farming sectors in light of the roads review. 

He said: “These vital sectors contribute more in carbon emissions than transport, but are undergoing revolutionary transitions. We will help them transition at the greatest pace available.”

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