Wales

David Cameron expected to announce Wales powers deal

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Media captionMr Cameron said he and deputy PM Nick Clegg would be outlining major changes for funding in Wales

Prime Minister David Cameron has revealed a major announcement about the tax and borrowing powers of the Welsh government will be made on Friday.

Speaking to BBC Wales, Mr Cameron said he and deputy PM Nick Clegg would be outlining major changes for funding in Wales.

An announcement about an M4 relief road is also expected.

The prime minister also announced the 2014 Nato summit is to be held in Wales at Newport's Celtic Manor.

Mr Cameron and Mr Clegg's announcement is expected to be the UK government's response to a review by the Silk Commission on the tax and borrowing powers for Wales.

The UK government was due to give its response to the Silk report in the spring after it was published last November in which it said the Welsh government should be able to borrow money and have some powers to vary taxes.

'Believe in devolution'

The review's recommendations included:

  • The Welsh government having the ability to vary the rate of income tax in Wales
  • Business rates being fully devolved
  • Stamp duty and land tax being devolved to Wales
  • That Wales get borrowing powers "at least proportionate to that in Scotland "

Delays in the UK government responding to the reviews has led to criticism from Wales' First Minister Carwyn Jones who is due to meet Mr Cameron and Mr Clegg on Friday.

The UK government's response was initially expected in the spring.

But speaking on BBC Wales Today, Mr Cameron denied there had been a delay in responding to Silk, saying: "It takes time to get these things right."

Mr Cameron said he agreed with the principle that "you get better government if the government is responsible for some of the money that it spends".

He said: "I believe in devolution. I believe it's right to give people in Wales more power and control over their future and their government."

'Important issues'

Mr Cameron also spoke about the importance of transport links in Wales.

"I know we need these infrastructure investments in Wales," he said.

"It's this government that's putting the money into the electrification of the railway line all the way up to Swansea and, of course, the Valley lines.

"I know we need to fix the M4 issue as well so we'll be making announcements about these important issues tomorrow."

Mr Cameron told BBC Wales the first Nato summit in the UK since 1990 will take place at the Celtic Manor, Newport in autumn 2014.

The Nato meeting is expected to be attended by US President Barack Obama on his first visit to Wales.

Mr Cameron said it was "Wales' turn for one of these big events."

'Reflect future'

He told BBC Wales: "It's a great opportunity to showcase the modern successful Wales.

"It will be a wonderful opportunity for Wales and south Wales.

"This is an important Nato summit. It's the end of Afghan mission and important to reflect on the future of Nato."

The last time Britain hosted the Nato summit was 23 years ago in London when Margaret Thatcher was prime minister.

But next year it will be the first time the summit has come to Wales with the Celtic Manor, which hosted golf's 2010 Ryder Cup, chosen as the venue.

It will also mark the 65th anniversary of Nato and David Cameron said it will be an important event as it will mark the end of Nato's mission to Afghanistan.

First Minister Carwyn Jones tweeted: "I welcome the news that the Nato Summit is to be held here and the opportunity it offers to showcase Wales.

"We look forward to being able to hold a reception on behalf of people of Wales to welcome world leaders to our country as happened in NI."

Emma Watkins, CBI Wales director, said: "The CBI applauds the UK government's decision to choose Newport as the host city for Britain's first NATO summit in a generation.

"The choice of a Welsh city is a major opportunity, not just for the people and businesses of Newport but the whole of Wales to showcase the very best the nation has to offer."

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