The Foundational Economy

Welsh Government define the foundational economy as the part of our economy that creates and distributes goods and service that we rely on for everyday life, these sectors are critical to the local economy and provide essential employment.

It is estimated that the Foundational Economy accounts for four in ten jobs in Wales and £1 for at least every £3 spent and importantly the wealth it generates remains in the local community. Businesses operating in the foundational economy are crucial providers of wealth where job opportunities are limited and transportation is a significant issue.

Examples of the foundational economy are:

    • Care and health services
    • Food
    • Housing
    • Energy
    • Construction
    • Tourism
    • High street retailers

    Neath Port Talbot County’s main economic activity is substantially concentrated along the M4 Corridor, there are fewer job and business opportunities based in our five valleys despite the potential of the area’s communities and natural assets and this is compounded by generally poor transport connections beyond the main towns and coast. Foundational economy businesses can help reverse poor employment conditions, keep money in local communities and address environmental issues through the strengthening of local supply chains.

    Neath Port Talbot Council’s Economic Development team aim to support our foundational economy businesses through:

      • Supporting the sustainability and development of grass roots businesses providing local services for local people
      • Supporting sustainable local employment opportunities in valley communities by providing important entry points into the labour market
      • Providing opportunities for the encouragement and development of social enterprises
      • Maximising the potential of our town centres and valley communities
      • Supporting the creation of new business start ups
      • Developing local supply chains
      • Encourage and support circular economy activities

      Collaboration and working in partnership is key in supporting the local economy and the Economic Development team place an emphasis on partnership working. These are just some of the organisations we work with to support our local foundational economy:

      For more information on how we can support your business or if you’re interested in partnership working with the Economic Development team contact:
      Savannah Sharpe, Foundational & Circular Economy Officer
      Tel: 01639 686043