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Tax powers promise from Cameron

Source BBC News@

David Cameron and Nick CleggDavid Cameron and Nick Clegg will meet Carwyn Jones on Friday

The Welsh government will get some control over income tax, subject to a referendum, Prime Minister David Cameron will say on Friday.

He and deputy PM Nick Clegg will announce new financial powers for the devolved administration.

They include control of the stamp duty paid by house buyers and powers to finance upgrades on the M4 motorway.

The Welsh government has accused the Westminster coalition of dragging its feet over further devolution.

It follows the publication of a report last year which said the Welsh government should have new tax powers.

At present Wales's devolved administration cannot vary taxes or borrow money, and gets its budget in a grant from the Treasury.

Last November the Silk Commission, set up by the Westminster coalition, said the Welsh government should be responsible for raising some of the money it spends.

It included a recommendation to devolve powers to vary a portion of income by 2020, following a referendum.

'Opportunity to decide'

First Minister Carwyn Jones has accused the UK government of delaying its response to the Silk report, which was initially expected in the spring.

Writing jointly in the Western Mail, the prime minister and his deputy say "Wales will have the opportunity to decide whether some of their income tax should be devolved".

"This is hugely important - one of the best ways to raise living standards is to cut peoples' taxes," they write.

They say the UK government will "provide for a referendum to take place so that people in Wales can decide whether some of their income tax should be devolved, in the same way as it is in Scotland".

The Silk Commission said a referendum should only happen with the agreement of both the Welsh and UK governments, a two-thirds majority in the Welsh assembly and the agreement of both Houses of Parliament.

'Get this project started'

Referring to the M4, the coalition leaders say Wales "must have the tools to invest in the transport infrastructure it needs".

David CameronDavid Cameron announced the next Nato summit is to be staged in Wales

The Welsh government has been calling for borrowing powers to pay for a £1bn upgrade to the M4, with the first minister saying it would be a "disaster" if the borrowing powers recommended by Silk were not devolved.

With a consultation underway on building a new stretch of motorway around Newport, the PM and deputy PM say there will be the "devolution of some finance raising powers... to get this project started".

Devolution of stamp duty - another Silk recommendation - will "bring in money that can be spent on big Welsh priorities like much needed affordable homes", they say.

Speaking to BBC Wales on Thursday, Mr Cameron said he agreed with the principle that "you get better government if the government is responsible for some of the money that it spends". He denied delaying the process, adding: "It takes time to get these things right."

He also announced that the next summit of Nato leaders in autumn 2014 will be held at the Celtic Manor resort in Newport, saying it was an opportunity to showcase the modern, successful Wales.

Đăng ký: Tieng Anh Vui

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