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Labour policy

The Labour party announced various policy changes at its party conference at the end of September 2018.

These include:

  • guaranteeing no income tax rises for those earning less than £80,000, which is 95% of earners
  • no increases in personal national insurance
  • no increase in the rate of VAT
  • increasing the rate of corporation tax for the largest businesses while keeping it the lowest of major developed economies
  • reintroducing the small profits rate of corporation tax
  • giving HMRC new powers to clamp down on those who avoid paying tax
  • setting a target to eliminate the deficit on government day-to-day spending within five years
  • setting up a National Transformation Fund to "deliver the investment that every part of Britain needs to meet its potential, overcoming years of neglect"
  • introducing a Fiscal Credibility Rule for responsible economic management. This would ban borrowing to fund day-to-day expenditure
  • giving more independence to the Office for Budget Responsibility
  • implementing the recommendations of the Kerslake Review of the Treasury
  • creating a National Transformation Fund to invest £250 bn in ten years in every region of the UK
  • completing the HS2 rail link, and then extending it to Scotland
  • building Crossrail 2, electrifying the rail network across the whole country, completing the Science Vale transport arc from Oxford to Cambridge, through Milton Keynes
  • building a Crossrail of the North and a new Brighton main line
  • investing in low-carbon gas and renewable electricity production, ensuring that 60% of the UK's energy comes from zero-carbon or renewable sources by 2030
  • delivering superfast broadband by 2022, improving mobile internet coverage, and expanding free wi-fi in city centres and on public transport
  • meeting the OECD target of spending 3% of GDP on research and development
  • imposing ethical standards on suppliers to government and local authorities, including the appointment of a Digital Ambassador to promote Britain
  • creating a National Investment Bank with £250 bn of lending power [it is not clear if this is in addition to the National Transformation Fund]. This Bank will particularly lend to small businesses
  • banning banks from closing a branch where there is a local need
  • reforming company law so that directors owe a duty to employees, customers and others in addition to shareholders
  • amending the takeover regime to protect pensions
  • reform the business rates system
  • scrapping quarterly reports for businesses with a turnover below £85,000
  • ensuring government pays its suppliers within 30 days, and introducing a new system for other persistent late payers
  • doubling the size of the co-operative sector
  • giving employees the first right to buy when a company is offered for sale
  • bringing railways, water and Royal Mail back into state ownership
  • banning fracking
  • providing home-owners with interest-free loans to improve their property. [18.10]