Labour says £28bn green prosperity plan in doubt due to Tory crashing of the economy – UK politics live


Key events

Today’s admission from the shadow chancellor (see 9.24am) comes less than two years after Rachel Reeves pledged £28bn a year in climate measures until 2030 to protect Britain from disaster and told Labour’s party conference that she would be “the first green chancellor”.

Labour said in September 2021 that the amount would quadruple the government’s current capital investment. In total the party said it would commit £224bn on climate measures over the next eight years.

Targets for spending were planned to include gigafactories to build batteries for electric vehicles, the hydrogen industry, offshore wind turbines made in Britain, cycle paths and flood defences, Jessica Elgot reported at the time.

Here’s full story from Whitehall editor Rowena Mason:

Labour says £28bn green prosperity plan in doubt

Labour has admitted that its £28 billion green prosperity plan may have to be watered down.

Blaming the Tories, who she said had “crashed our economy”, Rachel Reeves, the shadow chancellor, this morning said she could not supply a “final set of numbers” on spending until a further fiscal statement from the government.

She told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme:

The other thing that has happened in last two years is the Tories have crashed our economy, and as a result interest rates have gone up 12 times, inflation is now at 8.7% and I’ve always said our fiscal rules are non-negotiable.
Economic stability, financial stability, always has to come first and it will do with Labour. That’s why it’s important to ramp up and phase up our plans to get to the investment we need to secure these jobs so that it is also consistent with those fiscal rules to get debt down as a share of GDP and to balance day-to-day spending.

The £28bn figure, previously given by Labour, would instead be a target to work towards, she said, rather than the initial sum allocated for the plan in the first year of government, as the party had previously pledged.

She also said she is “staggered” that the prime minister gas returned from the US with “no industrial plan” for Britain after Rishi Sunak and the US president Joe Biden’s announcement of the Atlantic Declaration:

I’m staggered frankly that he’s come back with no industrial plan for Britain to seize the opportunities that they are seizing in the US.

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