The Bevan Foundation has labelled the Welsh Labour Government’s “Our Valleys, Our Future” action plan as “bland” and says it “lacks ambition”.
The think-tank’s director said that the Government’s target of getting 7,000 more people into work does not mark an improvement on previous employment trends.
Other shortcoming that were highlighted included the lack of local job opportunities for young people, access to public transport, and education support.
Commenting, Shadow Cabinet Secretary for Public Services, Mark Isherwood AM, said
“Despite representing all but one Valleys seat and controlling five of the seven councils, Welsh Labour have failed to deliver genuine economic improvements in these areas of South Wales.
“People still feel as if their communities are being hollowed out and that there is the need to move away in order to find decent well-paid jobs.
“This criticism of the Welsh Government’s plan by the Bevan Foundation is a very telling sign of how Welsh Labour’s policy agenda is failing to deliver.
“Over the last two decades successive Welsh Labour Governments have only brought about cosmetic change and have failed to put in place any practical measures to tackle the Valleys' underlying structural economic problems.
“Welsh Labour have been entrusted with our economy, health service, and schools for nearly 20 years, and yet Wales continues to fall behind in so many areas.”