In his regular blog for Caerphilly Observer, Andrew Diplock, chair of Caerphilly Business Forum, explains why a Yes vote in the upcoming Assembly powers referendum will be good for businesses.
There are a lot of weighty matters for business people to get their heads around these days. Many struggle to find the time to give some issues the proper consideration they deserve.
Among them is the referendum on March 3. What would that mean to us? After listening to both sides of the argument I now feel quite clear that businesses in Wales could certainly benefit from the increased legislative powers proposed.
I may not have been sure about this in 1997 when the business community was largely luke-warm towards devolution. But since then our nation has grown in confidence and we have relaxed in the realisation that governing ourselves, albeit to a limited degree, hasn’t led to the apocalypse.
Indeed, it has created many opportunities. In Caerphilly County Borough we see entrepreneurs flourishing – some would say despite the problems created by successive central governments. We also see larger businesses recognising the need for a proper presence in Wales rather than considering us joined at the hip to the West of England.
So how would Wales handle further legislative powers? In 2011 I’m confident that we’d use them wisely and responsibly and there are plenty of positive, practical things our political leaders could do with them.
Overall, they would be able to make it easier and more efficient for us to do business. At the moment, most businesses are bound by endless bureaucracy.
As First Minister Carwyn Jones said, business needs to feel the Government is on its side, not on its back.
Removing this ball and chain would be a huge boost and make Wales much more attractive to inward investment from the rest of the UK as well as overseas.
Our politicians understand this and – with our voice ringing in their ears – I believe they can make it happen.
Chairman, Caerphilly Business Forum
For more information about Caerphilly Business Forum and its events call 029 2125 1395 or email firstname.lastname@example.org