Commission on Devolution in Wales
ICM’s latest research measures attitudes towards the Welsh government’s tax and borrowing powers amongst adults in Wales.

The survey, conducted on behalf of The Commission on Devolution in Wales, shows that most people in Wales think that the UK government in Westminster has the greatest influence over the taxes they pay. Just 6% believe that the Welsh government currently holds the most power, behind the EU at 16%. When asked which level of government should have the most influence, more than half still opt for the UK government (54%) while 31% say the Welsh government and just 1% mention the EU.

This research adds to the body of evidence suggesting that there is a strong link between speaking Welsh and desiring greater powers for the Welsh government: almost half of fluent speakers (48%) think that Welsh government should wield the greatest influence over taxes, compared to 27% of those who don’t speak any Welsh.

The survey also finds that:

• One in four (27%) believe that a transfer of some tax powers from Westminster to Cardiff would give the Welsh Government more influence over tax decisions, although the majority (58%) think it would make no difference one way or the other;

• Three in five (62%) think that the Welsh government should have the right to increase or decrease the level of taxes in Wales in order to adjust national spending levels;

• When asked about borrowing powers, two in three (66%) agree that the Welsh Government should be able to borrow money to fund capital projects such as building roads and hospitals.

ICM Research interviewed a random sample of 1,000 Welsh adults aged 18+ by telephone between the 24 and 26th February 2012. Data has been weighted to match the demographic profile of the Welsh public. ICM is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules.

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Martin Boon

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