Starmer puts wealth creation at heart of Labour plan

Sir Keir Starmer
Sir Keir Starmer: ‘We are pro-business and pro-worker’ (pic: Terry Murden / DB Media Services)

Sir Keir Starmer will today outline how wealth creation will form the central theme of his ‘changed’ Labour party.

He will declare the party to be both “pro-business and pro-worker” and committed to sound finance.

Launching the party’s manifesto in Manchester, he will pledge tough new spending rules and an industrial strategy to give business long-term certainty for investment decisions.

“Growth is our core business – the end and the means of national renewal,” he will say, adding that “sustained economic growth is the only route to improving the prosperity of our country and the living standards of working people.

“That is why it is Labour’s first mission for government. It means being pro-business and pro-worker. We are the party of wealth creation.”

He will cap corporation tax at 25% and reform planning rules to build the railways, roads, labs and 1.5 million homes as part of a 10-year infrastructure strategy.

A National Wealth Fund will invest in the “industries for the future”, aided by Great British Energy to accelerate the transition to clean power. He will say that the plan will create 650,000 jobs.

Sir Keir wants elected mayors across the country, with new powers over transport, skills, housing and planning, and employment support, along with new growth plans for towns.

A New Deal for Working people will make work pay, while new childcare offer to get people into work, and tackle health and mental health challenges to get people back to work

There will be reform of the immigration and skills system “to ensure Britain is developing home-grown skills with workforce plans to meet the needs of industries and the economy”.

Labour will reform the immigration and skills system (pic: Terry Murden)

Labour says its manifesto is built around five national missions “to end sticking plaster politics, end the chaos, turn the page and meet the long-term challenges the country faces.” 

The party insists it has a “serious, fully costed, fully funded plan for change”. The manifesto will contain a tax lock for working people – a pledge not to raise rates of income tax, national insurance or VAT.

In notes ahead of the launch, Sir Keir said: “Some people say that how you grow the economy is not a central question – that it’s not about how you create wealth, but how you tax it, how you spend it, how you slice the cake, that’s all that matters.

“So let me be crystal clear – this manifesto is a total rejection of that argument, because if you transform the nature of the jobs market, change the infrastructure that supports investment into our economy, reform the planning regime, start to unlock the potential of billions upon billions in projects that are ready to go, held up by the blockers of aspiration, then that does so much more to our long-term growth prospects.

“The same is true of our public services. If we could grow the economy at anything like the level the last Labour Government did, that’s an extra £70bn worth of investment for our public services.

“Wealth creation is our number one priority. Growth is our core business – the end and the means of national renewal. The mandate we seek from Britain at this election is for economic growth.

“This changed Labour Party has a plan for growth. We are pro-business and pro-worker. The party of wealth creation.

“We have a plan in this manifesto that represents a total change in direction, that is laser-focused on our cause. A Government back in the service of you and your family.”

Comment: Britain needs Labour to be radical

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