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Thursday, 6 February, 2003, 07:28 GMT
Moves to revitalise west Wales
West Wales
Communities in west Wales have suffered job losses
The ailing west Wales economy is to receive a multi-million pound plan to kick start its recovery after years of massive job losses.

Just over half the money, 33m, will be spent on a regeneration scheme in the coastal town of Cardigan, south Ceredigion, where 300 jobs were lost when clothing manufacturer Dewhirst pulled out last November.

Machinist generic
The factory makes trousers for M&S

Another regeneration project at nearby Fishguard in north Pembrokeshire, which saw Dewhirst shut its last factory in Wales with 165 job losses, is to cost around 30m.

Assembly Economic Development Minister Andrew Davies is to visit both areas to explain how the money will be spent and to hear people's views what is needed to boost the area's economy.

West Wales - Story of economic decline
2001 - Dewhirst, Cardigan - 300 jobs
2001 - Dewhirst, Fishguard - 165 jobs
2001 - ITV Digital, Pembroke - 900 jobs

Cardigan's regeneration scheme involves spending 33m developing skills, improving tourism facilities and providing broadband internet access for the town.

The three-year project, commissioned by Mr Davies, has been worked out between the Assembly Government and its agencies, Ceredigion council and local interests.

Later in the day, Mr Davies will visit the state-of-the-art Cleddau Bridge call centre - which has been the victim of over 1,000 redundancies including the loss of the ITV DIgital contract - to learn how it is to be marketed to potential clients.

Fishguard
A marina could be built at Fishguard

The Assembly Government believes its regeneration plans boost the long-term prospects of both areas.

"The west Wales economy has suffered a number of blows recently and, as such, its regeneration is a priority for the Welsh Assembly Government and the rest of Team Wales," Andrew Davies said.

'Serious investment'

"The plan for Cardigan has built on extensive consultation with the local authorities, business representatives and a wide range of local interests to ensure they are totally focused on the needs and priorities of the area.

"The proposals for Fishguard and north Pembrokeshire - an area which has also suffered significant job losses of late - are consultative only at this stage as the closure of the Dewhirst factory in the town came later than that in Cardigan.

"The plans are not quick-fix 'sticking plaster' solutions - they are realistic, considered approaches, backed by serious investment."

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 ON THIS STORY
BBC Wales' Rhun ap Iorwerth
"The region has suffered significant job losses"

More from south west Wales
See also:

30 Jan 03 | Wales
23 Aug 02 | Wales
27 Nov 02 | Wales
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