Say Yes to Wales reaching its potential on the international stage


Plaid Cymru leader and Minister for the Economy & Transport, Ieuan Wyn Jones AM, will today (Thursday 17th March) say that a 'yes' vote on March 3rd would demonstrate that Wales is a 'can do country,' and would enhance the country's image on the international stage.

Mr Jones, who is also the AM for Ynys Mon, will be making a keynote speech at a Plaid Cymru organised business says YES event in the Caerphilly constituency.

During his speech he will also warn that a 'no vote' could cause irreparable damage to the efforts to transform the Welsh economy as the nation emerges from recession.

The Plaid leader will say that giving up the opportunity to have more influence over the future of Wales would harm the image of Wales throughout the rest of the UK and beyond. He will say that a ‘no vote’ would be a huge set-back to the efforts to forge new relations and business opportunities between Wales and world as well as to the process of reinvigorating the Welsh brand abroad. 

In urging a 'Yes' vote Mr Jones will say that "a country which wants to reconstruct its business environment and transform its economic fortunes must exude confidence". He'll tell the businesses gathered in Caerphilly that saying 'yes' to law-making powers will be Wales' opportunity to say that it wants to compete with the best. 

Ieuan Wyn Jones AM will say:

"This referendum is an opportunity to say that we in Wales are as capable as Scotland or Northern Ireland or almost any other country in the world of making our own laws.  This is about how we in Wales look and think about ourselves and how we want others to see us.

Can you imagine if we decided to vote ‘no’ on March the 3rd? What then would happen on the 4th when the result was announced?  How would the rest of the UK, let alone the rest of Europe and the world look at us then? They would look at us and see a country which gave up the opportunity to take greater responsibility in shaping our own future. A country – probably one of the very few – which has ever said ‘no thank you’ to having its own law-making powers – and that said instead that we want others to decide what’s best for us. 

And friends, what then for the image of Wales as we seek to build relations and create business opportunities with our friends beyond our borders?  What happens then to ‘brand Wales’ when we try to engage in trade and investment with companies throughout the rest of the UK and beyond? 

The referendum isn’t a choice between moving forward or staying with the ‘status quo’ as some would have us believe. In reality it is about moving forward or taking a big step backwards. Which self respecting nation in the world would want to say ‘no’ to making laws in its own Assembly or Parliament?"

The views of Plaid Cymru’s leader have been echoed by the business community in Wales who are also giving their backing to a Yes vote.