Agenda and minutes

Economy and Development Select Committee - Thursday, 10th June, 2021 10.00 am

Venue: County Hall, Usk with Remote Attendance


No. Item


To note the appointment of County Councillor P. Jordan as Chair.


The appointment of CC P. Jordan as Chair was noted.


To appoint a Vice-Chair.


Councillor Richard Roden was proposed by Councillor Davies and seconded by Councillor Jordan.



Declarations of Interest.


There were no declarations of interest.



Public Open Forum.


No members of the public were present.



To consider the Future Economies Ambition Statement and to link the regional picture with local direction (report to follow). pdf icon PDF 141 KB

Additional documents:


Cath Fallon and Hannah Jones presented the report, with additional contributions from Cabinet Member Sara Jones, and answered the members’ questions with Frances O’Brien and James Woodcock.


How are we encouraging businesses to come into the county from outside, when we don’t have any sites ready yet? Sites that were previously earmarked for B1/B2 have now been given consent for residential use – is there not therefore a reduction in available sites? Will businesses therefore be attracted to places in SE Wales like Newport, leading to workers living in Monmouthshire but working out of county?

There’s a call at the moment from our Planning colleagues for candidate sites to come forward. There have been issues with take-up in the past, which is why some industry has gone to housing. But, recently, some sites that were locked for a while are starting to reopen. A number of us, including the Chief Exec, have been in discussions with businesses looking to come into Monmouthshire on those sites, which is very encouraging.

In dealing with enquiries as they come in, we do tailored searches with our local agents to ensure that we provide the right property to the right business. We are in a situation, however, with our indigenous businesses (particularly in the north of the county) that are becoming site-constrained. We are doing a lot of work with them at the moment on an individual basis to see how they might expand locally – putting them in touch with Planning – or looking at potential other sites. This is on a day-to-day basis. It’s a bespoke local offer, and we find businesses value and benefit from that service. Inward investment enquiries can come either directly from a business or, more often, via Welsh Government. We seek to understand the needs of that business in terms of premises and any other queries they have as they consider a potential relocation. Identifying premises is a key part of that but also understanding potential future skills or staff needs, and any assistance that we or partner organisations can provide. Finance is also an area that generates a number of queries, in terms of grant funding or investment available, particularly from the public sector. We support enquirers in all of those areas, and link them with other organisations that can provide that assistance. The enquiries that we receive from Welsh Government are often shared with a number of authorities; an organisation can look at a number of options as they seek to relocate. Sometimes we’re able to get feedback on the decision that an organisation has made when selecting their location. Unfortunately, though, it’s sometimes not possible to understand the reasons behind a business’ final decision in their choice of location.

In terms of inward investment, and how that works across the region, the CCR plays a key role for us in trying to support and coordinate inward investment opportunities and conversations. They also interlink with Welsh Government in terms of their foreign inward investment  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.


Economy and Development Select Committee Forward Work Plan. pdf icon PDF 600 KB


The next meeting will consider Town Centre Regeneration and bids, and whether rearrangement of the town centres due to the pandemic should remain.



Council and Cabinet Work Planner. pdf icon PDF 163 KB


To confirm the minutes of the previous meeting. pdf icon PDF 458 KB


The minutes were confirmed and signed as an accurate record.



Next meeting: Thursday 15th July 2021 at 10.00am.