A group that will advise on how £100m of Welsh Government funding can be invested to support emerging technologies in the South Wales Valleys has met for the first time today.

Economy Secretary, Ken Skates has pledged that the Welsh Government will invest £100m over ten years to make Blaenau Gwent and the wider South Wales Valleys a globally recognised centre for the development and delivery of emerging technologies.

It is anticipated that the programme known as Tech Valleys will create around 1500 sustainable jobs over the decade.

To progress this work, the Welsh Government has now established the Tech Valleys Strategic Advisory Group.

The Group will provide advice to the First Minister, the Economy Secretary and the Welsh Government on Tech Valleys’ strategic objectives and priorities to help ensure that the impact of the investment is maximised.

It is made up of partners from industry, public sector and academia and will advise on best practice and learning identified in other regions of the UK and internationally.

The Group replaces the Ebbw Vale Enterprise Zone Board that was wound up in July.

Economy Secretary, Ken Skates said:

“The £100m that we are investing in Tech Valleys will drive high value jobs predominantly within new technologies and advanced manufacturing sector and help to make Blaenau Gwent and the wider South Wales Valleys a globally recognised centre for the development and delivery of emerging technologies.

“The investment will also be used to drive and support entrepreneurial activity and to provide high quality employment opportunities and skills development for people living locally.

“Tech Valleys really does have the potential to transform lives. It is a hugely important initiative and I am delighted that the Tech Valleys Strategic Advisory Group, with its high calibre of membership has now met and can begin its important role.

“I look forward to work closely with the Group and partners from across public sector, industry and academia to ensure our investment in Tech Valleys works to leverage in significant private and public sector funding and delivers against our objectives of better jobs closer to home.”

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