Labour to recognise Welsh claim

The shadow Scottish secretary has announced that with a labour government in Westminster, Wales would receive more money. The pro-union MP, Margaret Curran explained that the Labour Party would recognise Wales’  “claim to extra resources”.

The current system for deciding the amount of money given to each of the devolved nations is calculated by the Barnett formula, which bases the amount of money allocated on population size.

However, the Welsh government have long been calling for this system to be replaced by one which would take ‘need’ into account, rather than numbers. These calls have been made because of the Welsh government feeling short changed by the formula.  The Welsh government has been calling for reform of Treasury funding of the devolved nations since 2009 when its Holtham Commission said the Barnett formula deprived Wales of around £300m a year.

Despite this, Ms Curran said the formula would not be changed, just improved. She spoke of this on the BBC’s Sunday politics show, stating: ‘Ed Miliband, the leader of the Labour Party, has been categorically clear about this and there will be no change to the Barnett formula in relation to Scotland.

“We do, in the Labour Party, recognise that there is a specific set of issues in relation to Wales because of convergence, and Wales has lost out because of that. We want to address the issue in relation to Wales.”

This is an area we can expect to see with greater detail in the manifesto for next year’s general election.

Matt Harding