Swansea Bay Bids for City Region Status
MORE investment and job opportunities could be on the way to
Swansea Bay if the area is successful in its bid to become a City
Research shows City Region status elsewhere in the UK and Europe
in areas like Liverpool, Birmingham and Bilbao has helped drive
This is why the Welsh Government has asked areas interested in
the status to submit supporting evidence as it considers the
introduction of a City Region in Wales.
Swansea, Carmarthenshire and Neath Port Talbot Councils have
responded by putting forward a case for Swansea Bay.
The supporting evidence points to links that already exist
across the Swansea Bay area. They include the number of people who
travel between the Council areas for work, good public transport
links and an attractive tourism offer. An impressive selection of
multi-national companies is also highlighted as well as the
strength of innovation linked to the area's universities.
Mark James, Carmarthenshire Council Chief Executive, said: "The
range of multi-national companies across Swansea Bay like Tata
Steel, Amazon and Virgin shows investors have confidence in the
area as a whole.
"All three universities in South West Wales also have a strong
track record of collaboration through the Dragon Innovation
Partnership while Swansea Metropolitan University, Trinity St David
and the University of Wales are in process of merging to create a
Steve Phillips, Neath Port Talbot Council Chief Executive, said:
"There's already an extensive track record of collaboration across
the private, public and voluntary sectors in Swansea Bay. Examples
include bodies like the South West Wales Economic Forum, the
Regional Learning Partnership for South West Wales and the Swansea
Bay Partnership that address economic and regeneration issues
facing the region.
"The call for evidence says City Regions with a population of
more than 500,000 are strong drivers of economic growth. With a
population of 667,700 in South West Wales, a Swansea Bay City
Region would comfortably exceed that threshold. The strong
commuting flows across the area also strengthen Swansea Bay's
Jack Straw, Swansea Council's Chief Executive, said: "Adopting a
City Region approach in Swansea Bay will provide a focus for
setting economic policy and targeting investment in our key
"Working as a single entity with a common vision and shared
priorities will ensure the region capitalises on its strengths.
"Links in the area are already very strong and designation
of City Region status would help improve Swansea Bay's economic