250 new Virgin Media jobs welcomed

Commenting on the announcement that Virgin Media is set to create 250 new jobs in Swansea, Nick Ramsay AM, Shadow Minister for Business, Enterprise, Technology & Science, said: “This is welcome news for the Welsh economy and demonstrates how Wales can play a leading role in the technology sector.

Key Labour health pledges remain uncosted

Welsh Conservatives will tomorrow call on the Welsh Government to publish properly costed implementation plans for its key health policies. Despite being announced ahead of the Assembly elections, full details on annual health checks for the over 50s and extending the provision of primary care services remain unpublished.

Budget tinkering fails to address NHS cuts

Responding to the publication of the Welsh Labour Government’s Supplementary Budget, Paul Davies AM, Shadow Minister for Finance, said: “These changes to Labour’s budget are simply tinkering around the edges and fail to revisit the drastic cuts to the NHS."

No end in sight to TB eradication delay

Shadow Minister for Rural Affairs, Antoinette Sandbach AM, has condemned a further delay to the publication of a science review panel report and a subsequent decision on the government’s TB eradication programme. In his response to a written question from the Welsh Conservatives this month, the environment minister claimed he will ‘announce the way forward in early 2012’.

AWEMA report must be properly scrutinised

Commenting on the contents of an exposed 2004 report into the All Wales Ethnic Minority Association, which warned the government to stop new public funding for the body, Leader of the Welsh Conservatives in the Assembly Andrew RT Davies AM, said: “The fact that these warnings were received eight years ago is proof of the inaction we have highlighted on this serious issue."

Transparency required in AWEMA investigation

Commenting on the continuing investigation into allegations of irregularity at the All Wales Ethnic Minority Association (AWEMA), the Leader of the Welsh Conservatives in the Assembly has called for increased transparency from the Welsh Government. The renewed calls from Andrew RT Davies AM follow media reports concerning Labour’s 2011 Assembly election campaign and the involvement of Iqbal Malik, the son of AWEMA CEO Naz Malik.

Eventual movement welcomed on enterprise zones

Commenting on the Business Minister’s announcement on further detail regarding enterprise zones in Wales, Shadow Minister for Business Nick Ramsay AM, said: “These developments are much better late than never and I wholeheartedly welcome much of the detail here; notably the introduction of two new enterprise zones in Gwynedd and Pembrokeshire."

'Meagre' business start-up figures ignored by Labour

Welsh Conservatives have today accused the First Minister of ignoring ‘meagre’ statistics on the number of business start-ups in Wales. Latest figures show Wales is home to the second lowest number of new businesses across the 12 nations and regions of the UK. The figures also show the level of Welsh business start-ups has fallen in five of the last six years. In 2010, the number fell below the 2002 level.

UCAS stats 'cast a shadow' over tuition fees policy

Commenting on the publication of University and College Admissions Service statistics - showing an overall drop in the number of students applying to study in Wales and a 12.3 per cent fall in English applications - Shadow Minister for Education Angela Burns AM said: “These figures cast a worrying shadow over the headline-grabbing, wafer-thin tuition fees policy. “This is a half-baked scheme balanced precariously on the cross-border flow of students and today’s figures should act as another sobering wake-up call for the minister."

No guarantee on spine and joint waiting time target

The Health Minister has refused to give an assurance that all Welsh health boards will meet her orthopaedic waiting time target by next month. In her response to a written question asking for a guarantee that Betsi Cadwaladr UHB will have no patient waiting longer than 36 weeks (exc. major spines) by March 31st, the minister said the Board had ‘reiterated its commitment to delivering the target’.