Freeports

Wales – in the House of Commons on 25th May 2022.

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Photo of Paul Holmes Paul Holmes Conservative, Eastleigh

What steps his Department is taking to support the development of plans for at least one freeport in Wales.

Photo of David Davies David Davies The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Wales, Assistant Whip

The Wales Office has worked tirelessly to ensure there will be a freeport, which will deliver jobs and investment into Wales. As announced earlier this month, an agreement has now been reached between the UK and Welsh Governments to deliver that freeport, and this agreement will be backed by millions of pounds of Government funding.

Photo of Paul Holmes Paul Holmes Conservative, Eastleigh

I welcome the Government’s decision to have at least one freeport in Wales like the Solent freeport, which covers part of my constituency. Does my hon. Friend agree that, as well as bringing jobs and trade to Wales, it will bring mutual benefits to other freeports, it will be vibrant, and it is a stark reminder of why the Union between Wales and England is so important?

Photo of David Davies David Davies The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Wales, Assistant Whip

I agree with both of those excellent points. We have already seen that the Thames freeport has suggested that there will be 21,000 jobs directly and indirectly created, so we know that the Welsh freeport will deliver jobs. I also agree that it is going to be good for the Union and good for Wales to have vessels of all kinds coming from all over the world, bringing their jobs and investment with them, including perhaps from across the Union—we may even look forward to seeing a few ferries from Scotland, if the SNP Government can actually get around to building them.