A new £15m business support package for the support and growth of business and skills in Wales has been announced by Welsh Deputy Minster for Science, Innovation and Skills Lesley Griffiths.
The new skills growth programme builds on the success of the ProAct programme – a major Welsh Assembly Government scheme which was launched in 2009 to support businesses and employees during the downturn. The ProAct programme, along with the support of the European Social Fund, helped more than 8,300 people to remain in work, provided skills training, and supported businesses with financial help throughout the recession.
The skills growth initiative will be operational by 1 April 2010, subject to approval from the Welsh European Funding Office to extend the timescale and scope of the current ProAct Programme, and will run for an twelve months to provide an extra stimulus to economic restoration.
The new skills growth programme will support and prepare businesses in Wales for the economic upturn and ensure that they are in a position to maximise opportunities and compete in the global economy.
Ms Griffiths said: “This is a twin track approach to business survival and growth. The new skills growth support package is in direct response to the needs of business and industry and the Assembly Government is working with employers and the Trades Unions to develop the details so that it clearly meets the needs of the Welsh economy.”