(qlmbusinessnews.com Tues. 9th July, 2024) London, UK —

“Labour's New Growth Strategy: Rachel Reeves Unveils Economic Revival Plan”

Chancellor Rachel Reeves has vowed to “fix the foundations” of the UK economy, unveiling an immediate plan to spur growth by unblocking infrastructure projects and encouraging private investment in her inaugural speech.

Addressing business leaders, Reeves will assert that economic growth across all regions of the UK is a “national mission” and emphasise her readiness to make tough decisions to fulfil the new government's mandate.

In anticipation of Labour's first week in office, cabinet ministers made several announcements on Sunday night, including:

– Reforming planning regulations, including those on green belt land, and setting new housing targets.
– Negotiating an end to the junior doctors' strikes, with Wes Streeting set to meet the British Medical Association on Tuesday.
– Launching a recruitment drive for a new border security commander on Monday.
– Expanding the government’s teacher recruitment campaign.
– Assuring Ukraine that the military aid promised by Rishi Sunak in April is “guaranteed” and committing to increasing UK defence spending to 2.5% of GDP, as stated by new defence secretary John Healey during his visit to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy.

Prime Minister Keir Starmer is embarking on a 24-hour tour of Scotland, Northern Ireland, and Wales before returning to England, highlighting his dedication to all parts of the UK. He is the first prime minister since Tony Blair to secure victory in every part of Britain.

Starmer announced plans to establish a council of nations and regions, following a recommendation from a constitutional reform commission led by Gordon Brown. Speaking in Edinburgh on Sunday, he emphasised his commitment to working with elected officials from various political parties, including Conservative Tees Valley mayor Ben Houchen and Scottish National Party First Minister John Swinney.

“I am fully committed to the principle that local representatives understand best what their communities need, rather than decisions being made by individuals in Westminster and Whitehall,” he stated. “The interests of each community are best served by those elected to office.”

Deputy Prime Minister Angela Rayner will join Starmer for a meeting with English metro mayors on Tuesday to discuss Labour's strategy to “power up” Britain through increased devolution and local growth initiatives.

The Guardian reports that the slogan “levelling up” will be removed from the department's name, as it was deemed unclear and ineffective by the previous government. Instead, the department will revert to its former name: Housing, Communities and Local Government.

Rayner is expected to establish a ministerial office in Manchester, symbolising her focus beyond London and bringing her closer to her Ashton-under-Lyne constituency.

Reeves, who spent the weekend at the Treasury, stressed the urgency of economic reform, arguing that if the UK economy had grown at the average rate of OECD countries since 2010, it would be £140 billion larger.

This week, the government is anticipated to confirm changes to planning regulations, including reinstating mandatory housing targets for local authorities and easing the process for building on the green belt. A review of the National Planning Policy Framework is also expected, aimed at simplifying the construction of homes, laboratories, digital infrastructure, and gigafactories, alongside a consultation to decide where to establish new towns.

Reeves plans to bolster the existing growth unit within the Treasury. “It's growth, growth, growth,” a source revealed.

In her speech, Reeves will say: “Last week, the British people voted for change. Over the past 72 hours, I have begun the necessary work to deliver on that mandate. Our manifesto was clear: sustained economic growth is the only path to improving the prosperity of our country and the living standards of working people.

“Where previous governments hesitated to make difficult decisions to achieve growth, I will act decisively. This is now a national mission. There is no time to waste.

“This morning, I will outline the initial steps this new government is taking to fix the foundations of our economy, so we can rebuild Britain and improve every part of our country.”

Addressing business leaders from sectors including financial services and green industries, she will conclude: “It falls to this new government to fix the foundations.”

On Sunday, Reeves faced pressure from Unite general secretary Sharon Graham to revise fiscal rules to allow for increased borrowing to invest in infrastructure and public services, arguing that people “can't wait for growth”.

Reeves has stated that the government will only borrow to invest within its fiscal rules and that public debt should decrease year on year as a share of GDP by the fifth year of official forecasts.

Chancellor Rachel Reeves

Cabinet ministers are expected to introduce new measures and appointments on Monday, with MPs beginning to take their oaths on Tuesday.

On Monday, the Home Secretary will launch the recruitment advertisement for a new border security commander, expected to be drawn from former police chiefs or individuals with military or intelligence backgrounds.

Yvette Cooper has assembled a team in the Home Office to develop the remit and structure of the new border command, alongside work on a bill to grant new counter-terror powers to combat smuggling gangs.

“We cannot continue like this. We need to address the root of the problem, targeting these dangerous criminals and bringing them to justice,” Cooper said. “The border security command will significantly enhance UK enforcement efforts to tackle organised immigration crime, leveraging substantial resources to work across Europe and beyond to disrupt trafficking networks and collaborate with European prosecutors to deliver justice.”

The government has ruled out the introduction of digital ID cards, previously suggested by former Prime Minister Tony Blair as a means to control immigration.

Business Secretary Jonathan Reynolds told Times Radio that ID cards are not part of the current plans. “We can rule that out; it’s not something in our plans,” he said. Blair had advocated for ID cards as the “best solution” to ensure proper immigration control.

Health Secretary Wes Streeting will immediately address the junior doctors' strikes, with a face-to-face meeting with the BMA scheduled for Tuesday. He will visit a GP practice with NHS Chief Amanda Pritchard on Monday and meet the British Dental Association to discuss dental contract reforms.

“When I said the NHS was broken, I was being honest with the public about the scale of the challenge. It will take time to fix it, so there’s no time to waste,” Streeting said.

Education Secretary Bridget Phillipson wrote to all education staff on Sunday to boost morale and plans to meet unions in the coming days to reset the relationship between ministers and the teaching profession. Phillipson also announced the reopening and expansion of the Department for Education’s teacher recruitment campaign, Every Lesson Shapes a Life, aiming to recruit 6,500 more teachers.

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