The members of new teams that will advise the Welsh Assembly Government on the economic development of Wales have been revealed and includes some of the UK's foremost industry experts.
The sector panels are made up of business people from outside government who have an established record in their field. Each will advise on the best opportunities of the six key sectors identified by Ministers as having the best opportunity to grow the Welsh economy.
The advisers include one of the UK’s most successful biotechnology entrepreneurs, Sir Christopher Evans and the Chief Technical Officer at RWE nPower Kevin McCullough.
The panels were set up following the announcement of the Assembly Government’s new economic policy – ‘Economic Renewal: a new direction’, which sets out the role devolved government will play to support the private sector and the economy of Wales.
It focuses on six key sectors where Wales has clear advantages for growth. They include:
Energy and Environment
Advanced material and manufacturing
Financial and Professional services
Each of these sectors will have their own panel, made up of five private sector business people, including the chair. It will be their job to provide advice to Ministers on the opportunities and needs of the different sectors. Initially their priority will be to map out the shape of the sectors and work with businesses of all sizes in order to identify opportunities (please see notes to for full list of panel members).
The new sector chairs are:
• Advanced Materials and Manufacturing – Gareth Jenkins (pictured)
• Energy and Environment – Kevin McCullough
• Financial and professional Services – Chris Nott
• ICT – Thomas Kelly
• Life Science – Sir Christopher Evans
Ron Jones will chair the creative sectors panel and his appointment was announced in October last year.
The Deputy First Minister Ieuan Wyn Jones said:
“These new sector panels have one, clear role – to use their private sector success and experience to help us identify the best opportunities out there for business growth. Our ultimate aim is to see Welsh businesses – large and small – in these key sectors grow and create the jobs we need for the future development of our economy. We will be using this new team’s impressive knowledge, vision and leadership to help us achieve this.”