Written by: Keith Tully
Published: 18th November 2019
Leaders of the three largest national political parties are today making their respective pitches for the support of business bosses in advance of next month’s General Election.
Conservative leader Boris Johnson is to offer promises of tax cuts and an increase to research and development tax credits.
Policies that will increase the employment allowance from £3,000 to £4,000, alongside a cut in National Insurance potentially worth up to £1,000 for many thousands of businesses, are also to be announced by Mr Johnson.
On Brexit, the Tory leader will say that while he recognises that big business representatives would generally prefer to remain in the EU, his view is that politicians ought to carry out the result of the 2016 referendum.
Meanwhile, Jeremy Corbyn, the leader of the Labour Party, is to promise what he’s calling a climate apprenticeship programme, which would aim to train up some 80,000 people each year in areas geared towards the creation of a ‘greener’ economy.
The Labour leader’s plan would support people training to become engineers or technicians in renewable energy industries and would contribute to what Mr Corbyn intends to be a much more low-carbon economy in the coming decade.
“Climate apprenticeships will offer training to school leavers and workers looking to change jobs mid-career, creating the engineers, technicians and construction workers we need to transition to a green economy,” Mr Corbyn will say.
The Liberal Democrats leader Jo Swinson will also speak at the CBI event, with her pitch to businesses based in large part on the idea that the UK would be considerably better off economically if it were to remain part of the EU.
She will insist that her party is a natural ally of businesses and say: “With the Conservatives in the pocket of Nigel Farage and Jeremy Corbyn stuck in the 1970s, we are the only ones standing up for you.”
For her part, the CBI’s director-general, Carolyn Fairbairn, has made clear that whoever wins the upcoming election, businesses and politicians should work closely together in partnership to help make the UK and its economy as globally competitive as possible into the 2020s and beyond.