United Kingdom

Cameron Puts Jobs Vow At Heart Of Campaign



David Cameron has set out his plan for full employment, promising to make Britain the “jobs factory of Europe” as the economy returns to health.

The Prime Minister, speaking in Ipswich later, will say the country is “coming out the other side” after a “tough few years”.

With just months before the general election, he will also promise to treble start-up loans for young business people and urge voters to stick with his recovery plan.

Labour however, have said the Tories are out of touch if they think the economy is “fixed” and that most workers are now worse off.

In his speech, Mr Cameron is expected to say: “Full employment may be an economic term, but this is what it means in human terms: it means more of our fellow men and women with the security of a regular wage; it means you, your family and your children having a job and getting on in life.

“We are the jobs factory of Europe; we’re creating more jobs here than the rest of Europe put together.

“That’s what our long-term plan means for you – and if you vote Conservative, we can stay on this road to recovery.”

His plans to boost jobs include: three million more apprenticeships; controlling immigration and migrant benefits to get more Britons back to work; extra support for small business, such as cutting red tape and keeping taxes low; investment in infrastructure.

“The Conservatives are the party of small businesses,” Mr Cameron will say.

“We’re the party of the roofers and the retailers; the builders and the businesswomen.

“We’re the ones who back people who strike out on their own, take the risks, and create wealth and jobs in our country.”

The Prime Minister will say the boost in start-up loans – which are typically around £5,000 – will create at least 100,000 jobs by 2020.

Labour has hit out at the PM’s boasts about a healed economy, saying it shows they are out of touch with normal working people.

Rachel Reeves MP, Labour’s shadow work and pensions secretary, said the party had presided over “five years of talents wasted and opportunities denied”.

“The average wage has fallen more than £1,600 per year, 3.5 million people want to work more hours, and the number of people paid less than a living wage has risen to nearly five million,” said Ms Reeves.

She said a Labour government would also show strong support for small business and help low-paid workers.

“[We] will bring in a Compulsory Jobs Guarantee to get the long-term unemployed off benefits and into work,” said Ms Reeves.

“We will ban exploitative zero-hours contracts, boost apprenticeships, raise the minimum wage to £8 hour and get more workers paid a living wage.”

The Prime Minister’s jobs pledge comes as the gap between Britain’s best and worst-performing cities has “dramatically widened”, according to a new study.

The Centre for Cities research group says for every 12 jobs created since 2004 in cities in southern England, only one was created in cities in the rest of the country.


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