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Freight Transport Association FTA dismayed at shelving of road improvements by Welsh Assembly Government

Leading trade body the Freight Transport Association FTA has expressed its utter dismay as plans to make much needed improvements to new road building in Wales have been shelved, including the M4 relief road.

Jo Tanner, FTA spokesman, said: "We have seen a complete about face from the Welsh Assembly Government who had promised that the M4 relief road would be open by 2013. Without it the future of the South Wales economy is severely hamstrung."

"It is bitterly disappointing that despite industry’s best efforts to convey the importance of better traffic flows in and out of Wales to its economic well being, there is no apparent compulsion amongst the Assembly Government to invest in Wales’ future."

Speaking at the Welsh Assembly this afternoon, Ieuan Wyn Jones, Deputy First Minister and Minister for Economy and Transport, cancelled plans to build an M4 relief road between Magor and Castleton. In 2007, he announced that the scheme could go ahead with construction as early as 2010 to open in 2013. The Minister claimed that the scheme cost had risen almost threefold from £340 million to around £1 billion, citing this as the reason for cancelling the scheme.

The Welsh Assembly Government has also shelved plans to make much-needed improvements to access to Cardiff Airport.

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