Election - Economy in the right direction

Recent news on the economic front has shown that Great Britain is heading further down the right track.

For instance, the United Kingdom experienced a sharp rise in starting salaries in the month of March (according to KPMG and the Recruitment & Employment Confederation), with nearly a third of recruiters saying that starting salaries were higher than the month before.

The Confederation of British Industry released figures showing its monthly growth indicators suggest that the country’s growth had accelerated even more quickly in the first quarter of 2015 than in the final quarter of 2014.

Meanwhile, the service sector nationwide has seen its strongest growth since August 2014. The Markit/CIPS Purchasing Managers’ Index for the services sector reported growth at a seven month high, and further noted that this was driven by a rise in new business.

All these signs show that the Chancellor’s plans for a slow, stable economic recovery with an eye towards prosperity shared across the country are working.

There is only one realistic alternative to a Conservative-led government: Ed Miliband and Ed Balls running the country from Downing Street.

Nothing would please me more than to know that the country’s economy was in good hands no matter which party was in power, but sadly that’s far from the case. We’ve cut the deficit in half as a share of the economy, but Labour’s own spending plans show a black hole of £20.7 billion, according to the civil servants at HM Treasury.

Where we Conservatives have cut taxes for 26 million hard-working people, new figures show that every working household will face £3,028 of tax rises under Labour.

The £825 more of your own money you’re allowed to keep thanks to Conservatives in government will disappear pretty swiftly.

Here in Lincolnshire we should be particularly aggrieved by Labour’s announcement that they want to pay higher benefits in London and the South East.

In contrast, we’ve capped benefits to reward work, ensuring our economy delivers for those who work hard and play by the rules.

To ensure Britain lives within its means, we plan to run a surplus so that we can start paying down the massive debt we inherited from Labour, and to keep the economy secure.

Our record on job creation is unassailable, and here in our part of Lincolnshire has reached levels that economists say are effectively full-employment.

We want to replicate that around Britain, by encouraging enterprise and backing small businesses, keeping jobs taxes low, and cutting red tape.

The millions of new apprenticeships we’ve created will ensure that our young people have the skills they need to get real jobs, instead of studying for ‘mickey mouse’ degrees leaving them without any valuable skills.

We’ve made a lot of progress over the past five years, even burdened with the Lib Dems as coalition partners. Great Britain can’t afford to return to the something-for-nothing tax-and-spend welfare culture of Labour, and Lincolnshire voters can do their bit by helping to ensure a Conservative majority government with their votes on 7 May.

Sir Edward Leigh

Conservative PCC for Gainsborough