St David's Day reception 2017: Prime Minister's speech
At a reception for St David's Day, Prime Minister Theresa May gave a speech celebrating Welsh business, sport and food.
I am very pleased to be able to welcome you to Number 10 and to have this opportunity to say Dydd Gŵyl Dewi Hapus.
This reception is about celebrating everything that Wales has to offer to the world – and there is indeed much to celebrate. This proud country – and a special part of our United Kingdom – is home to some of the greatest talent and industry in the world.
And we can see that right here today. Whether it is leading figures from the worlds of business, sport and politics – or one of the finest arrays of award-winning cheese, cakes, ham, wine, beer, whiskys, spirits and flowers that I have ever seen.
It is no wonder there are quite so many Number 10 staff who have suddenly discovered their Welsh heritage.
I want to take this opportunity to say 2 things today.
The first is that I am immensely proud to be Prime Minister of the whole United Kingdom – and together with Alun as Secretary of State, I am absolutely committed to promoting and supporting Wales as part of that honour and responsibility.
As a UK government we will always do everything we can to support Welsh business and to help create more jobs in Wales.
That is why we are investing £500 million in the Cardiff Capital Region City Deal – the biggest City Deal in the UK. And why we remain committed to negotiating a City Deal for the Swansea Bay City Region too.
It is why we will continue to promote Wales as one of the great tourist destinations in the world, with no fewer than 5 Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, including the first ever, Gower.
And we will continue to champion Wales as a top destination for iconic World sport – from hosting Rugby World Cup matches to the European Champions League Final in Cardiff this May.
The second point I wanted to address briefly, and Alun has alluded to this, is how we seize the opportunity of this great moment of national change as we leave the European Union and forge a bold new future for ourselves in the world. And I have said I will strike a deal with the EU that works for all parts of the UK – and for the UK as a whole.
And we are engaging fully with groups and people from across Wales, including the Welsh government and indeed with all the devolved administrations as we form our negotiating position. I want to ensure that Wales is in the strongest possible position to benefit as we work to spread wealth and prosperity to every part of the UK.
And as we forge bold new trade deals with old friends and new allies around the world – I want that to mean more jobs in Wales, more exports of Welsh products and more growth for the Welsh economy. Because we are one United Kingdom – England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales. And we will succeed as one United Kingdom.
And as I said on the doorstep of Number 10 when I became Prime Minister, I will always fight to preserve our proud, historic union.
And I am determined that we will emerge from this great period of change stronger, fairer, more united and more-outward looking than ever before. And that will be the best possible outcome for Wales – and for the whole of our United Kingdom.
So thank you everybody for coming today – thank you to those who have brought their wares here to sample, thank you for everything that you contribute to Wales, and everything you contribute to the United Kingdom. And please do stay and enjoy the rest of the reception.
Find out more about the St David’s Day reception.