Categories: Business, Milford HavenPublished On: 17.05.2022456 words2.3 min read

A freeport is to be established in Wales with £26m from the UK government

The UK government is providing £26m funding

Wales is to get its own freeport. The news has been confirmed Thursday, May, 12, following an agreement struck between the UK and Welsh governments which will see the UK provide £26m in funding.

Eight freeports have already been approved for England and a deal also struck with the Scottish Government. The Welsh Government said that it had achieved agreement with Westminster that both Governments will act on the basis of a ‘partnership of equals’ to deliver any Freeports in Wales.

Ports across Wales, including MIlford Haven pictured, have already expressed interest in securing freeport status. (Image: Jonathan Myers)

Businesses will get tax incentives to set up in freeports from the UK and Welsh Governments including on devolved taxes like land transaction tax and rates. Both governments said they were open to a “multi-site” freeport in Wales which could include a large area of the coast.

There is currently a 45km boundary limit but this could be relaxed in Wales “should there be a sufficiently compelling case for doing so”. And both government said they were open to more freeports if they are “presented with a sufficiently compelling business case”. Ports across Wales, including Holyhead, Milford Haven and Associated British Ports’ south Wales ports, have expressed interest to securing freeport status.

Economy Minister, Vaughan Gething said:

“Following considerable engagement between our Governments, I’m pleased we have been able to reach agreement with UK Ministers to establish Freeports in Wales. The agreement we have reached is fair to Wales, and respects the Welsh Government’s responsibilities in devolved policy areas.

“However, we have made it clear to the UK Government that a Freeport will only be implemented if it can be demonstrated, using robust evidence and analysis, that it will support our fair work agenda and deliver long-term, sustainable benefits for Wales, and value for money for Welsh taxpayers.

“I very much hope that the UK Government’s willingness to work with the Welsh Government as equals on Freeports can provide a positive model for future co-operation between our governments on other initiatives.”

The UK Government’s Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, Michael Gove said:

“I am delighted that Wales is the latest area in the UK set to benefit from a new Freeport. The UK Government’s ambitious Freeports agenda will help to level up our coastal communities and create new opportunities for people right across the country.” . . . .

. . . continue reading the article on the Wales Online website here

“Together with the Welsh Government, I look forward to seeing innovative proposals come forward that demonstrate tangible benefits for the people of Wales.”