New cancer centre with borrowed money

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Finance Minster Jane Hutt has confirmed the Welsh government will build a new cancer centre at Velindre NHS Trust, with borrowed money.

Members of the finance committee were scrutinising the finance minister on 9 October 2013 on the 2014/15 draft budget announcement.

The Welsh government has estimated the new cancer centre will cost approximately £200 million, "to ensure Welsh NHS patients continue to receive the best care and cancer treatments".

According to the minister, this would be an arm's length, not for profit body that would borrow the money itself to fund the facility, thereby getting around the Welsh Government's inability to borrow.

Ms Hutt said: "Velindre will be first project that we'll invest in...this is a first step of a pioneering new way of spending on hospitals."

Talks are said to be at an early stage but it would be the first time that a hospital in Wales would have been built this way.

It would mark quite a radical departure by borrowing to build rather than financing via conventional capital budgets.

The overall draft budget is worth around £15bn.

According to the Welsh Government, main areas of investment are:

  • Health budget increased with a three year package of £570m for the NHS, additional £150m in this financial year
  • More than £600m towards major projects to stimulate the economy
  • Increased spending on schools over the next two years
  • Increased funding for universal benefits- free prescriptions, free school breakfasts and milk, free swimming and concessionary fares
  • Extra £11m to double the number of children benefiting from free childcare and parenting support through Flying Start by 2016.

Darllenwch hwn yn Gymraeg

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