Labour is better for business say politicians


Labour has accused mayor of London Boris Johnson of failing to provide the investment in skills and infrastructure needed to help London’s businesses thrive.

Johnson and the government have not done enough to encourage growth and investment, according to London Assembly Labour group deputy leader John Biggs, who is the party’s spokesman on economic development.

Biggs said: “All the evidence shows that successful economies are built on partnerships between the public and private sectors and London is no exception.

“Business can survive without government help but to succeed we need to nurture investment in skills, employability and strategic infrastructure projects to facilitate growth and investment.

“Under this government and mayor the funding available for this sort of investment in London’s economy has completely collapsed.”
Biggs hit out at the strategy of the mayor and the government as Labour made a new effort to win the backing of businesses with the promise of actively supporting the modernisation of the economy if returned to power.

Shadow business secretary Chuka Umunna said prime minister David Cameron and chancellor George Osborne had been the “roadblocks to reform”, adding that their insistence that the state needs to “stand aside and leave it to the market” is damaging companies.

Umunna said he would restore the Department for Business’ position in Whitehall and give it “real clout”.

Former prime minister Tony Blair and foreign secretary David Miliband have recently warned Labour not to alienate businesses.

Blair is said to have told MPs earlier this month that the party cannot go into the next general election without the support of a single major business figure.

Britain needs a “new economy” to compete with fast-growing emerging powers in the globalised world, Umunna told a CBI lunch.

Brazil’s GDP overtook Britain’s at the end of last year and per capita income is forecast to overhaul the UK’s by 2030.

Umunna said: “We need a new set of policies to build a better, more responsible and productive capitalism, fit for our times and for the future – a new economy to deliver the fairer outcomes at home and greater competitiveness abroad, for the British people and British business.

“As a nation, we have a job of work to do to modernise our economy. The market alone won’t get us there; government alone can’t do so either. But it must be a national mission where productive business and active government work together in partnership.”