A tweet trying to attract foreign investment to Wales by saying wages are lower than in other parts of the UK has been accused of being "sloppy".
Trade and Invest Wales said that Wales' workforce often has "up to 30% lower salary costs".
Economist Prof Phil Cooke told Newyddion 9 it put Wales in a category of economies it could not compete with.
The Welsh Government said the tweet was not representative of the wider marketing approach.
The tweet was sent by Trade and Invest Wales - a Welsh Government marketing initiative - several times with copies remaining online at the time of publication.
Prof Cooke, from Bergen University College in Norway, is the editor of the publication European Planning Studies.He told BBC Wales that it
"puts Wales in the same category of competition as less privileged economies which have not been developed"."You can't compete with them - they're even cheaper," he said.
"Its old fashioned and lazy."
Plaid Cymru's spokesperson for the economy says "celebrating cheap labour in Wales is insulting."
Rhun ap Iorwerth said:
"One of the biggest problems we have in the Welsh economy is that wages are too low.Labour AM Mick Antoniw said the tweets were "clearly a gaffe, and totally contrary to ongoing work to establish ethical employment standards."
"What we want to be doing is building those wage levels up by investing in skills making our excellent workforce even more productive.
"The days of selling Wales as a country where you can get a cheap workforce has to be consigned to history because it does nothing for our economy.
"I will be asking the Welsh Government for an explanation as to how this happened and to ensure it cannot happen again," he said.Former local government minister Alun Davies said the tweet did not reflect the ethos or values of Welsh Labour.
Unfortunately for Alun Davies but especially it does .
After 20 years of Labour rule in the Assembly there has been no real plan to build an infrastructure in Wales, that could see us becoming a highly skilled and educated workface, which not only attracts foreign investment , but above all builds our own industries both big and small.
Instead we are one of the poorest in Europe.
Indeed even if Brexit wasn't to take place and we still have European markets and Free Movement , we could see that movement going out of Wales as our "Brightest and Best " leave for better paid payed jobs elsewhere .
I suspect Brexit will still see people leaving for a better life in the London and the South East of England who will be weathering the storm far better than we are.
Either Brexit or No Brexit will see us continue as one of the poorest parts of Europe. The former will be worse but, the current situation only marginally more promising.
We must leave the Union but not the European one . Only as an Independent Nation in Europe can we survive as a Nation, or become an English region and work fodder for the Tory regions of England.