Posted: Fri 28th Aug 2015
This week we are featuring statements from the four candidates in the Labour leadership election outlining their policies and attitude towards business, entrepreneurs and the economy. Next up is Liz Kendall.
Labour needs to be as passionate about creating wealth as we are about spreading it.
Too often during the last election people felt that, while we had plenty to say about greed at the very top and exploitation at the bottom, we did far too little to show we could be trusted with the nation's finances and that we understood the vast majority in between. Not just the middle class but also, crucially, the small and medium enterprises that are the engines of the British economy and the drivers of future growth.
I've been clear that the only way to implement Labour values is to win back people's trust, and economic credibility is at the core of that. Demonstrating we can live within our means is key, but it's about much more;we need to tackle the myth that the Labour Party is anti-business. We know that the only way to put our values into action equality, opportunity, social mobility, is to encourage the creation of great jobs that people need for a better life.
We also need to bury the myth that to be pro-businesses is to be anti-worker. The Tory line that the two are somehow mutually exclusive and that the only way to provide a strong economy is to continually undermine our rights at work, is as pernicious as it is wrong. I want to see us learn from Germany and the Nordic countries, where workers have a much greater say in the way the companies they work for are run, shaping the way companies operate to make them not only fairer, but more sustainable and more successful.
Time and time again Conservative governments are returned at the ballot box, not out of any real love for Tory values, but because people are convinced that the economy is safer under the Tories. This is the third myth I am determined to bust. Over the last five years the national debt has soared, productivity has fallen and the recovery has, despite all the rhetoric, been built on the shaky ground of more debt, inflated house prices and low-skilled, low-pay work.
I'm determined to provide a better alternative, deeply rooted in Labour values and laser-focussed on restoring economic credibility and encouraging those jobs of the future that we need to give people a better life.
To do so, however, we need to leave behind the old command and control central planning of the past. The world has changed immeasurably in the last three decades and the way we approach the economic challenges we face has to change with it. That's why, under my leadership, I want to win power to give it away. The solutions to Britain's problems won't be imposed from Westminster and Whitehall, but made wherever possible in the communities that know best.
To create the better society we all want, Britain needs to encourage the innovative, successful businesses of the future to thrive. That's how we'll deliver on our values. And that's how we'll win.
This statement was originally provided to the Labour Finance & Industry Group.
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