From the TUC

TUC Budget Submission sets out alternative to spending cuts

21 Mar 2011, by in Economics

The TUC launched its Budget Submission today. Our submission, which we produce and send to the Chancellor before every Budget, sets out the policies that we believe the Treasury could introduce to strengthen the economy and to support working people.

This year we call for a Budget for growth and social cohesion. The case for action on growth seems to get stronger by the day. Growth went into reverse at the end of last year. That was before January’s VAT increase came into effect and before the bulk of the spending cuts started to bite. As if those developments don’t make things difficult enough, we now have conflict in the Middle East, which could affect the price of oil, and the devastation caused to Japan’s economy, caused by the earthquake and tsunami, to contend with. The case for urgent action to promote growth is now overwhelming.

Our Budget Submission argues that the single most effective action the Chancellor could take on Wednesday would be to reverse the spending cuts introduced last October. At a stroke, that would remove one downward pressure on economic growth, as well as keeping people in work, boosting communities and protecting vulnerable people.

Economic growth won’t come about as a result of ludicrous attempts to reduce workplace rights in small and medium sized firms, be they rights to request time off for training or to request flexible working. Which other government, anywhere in the world, has achieved meaningful economic growth this way? Economic growth will come through building the industries of the future, through better skills, and by accessing finance for industry, especially in areas such as green technology, where the UK could be among the world leaders. Our submission calls for all of these things, as well as tax breaks to encourage more high performance workplaces and more support for innovation.

Read our Budget Submission in full here (pdf).