During a speech in Manchester, Sir Keir Starmer laid out the five main “missions” that his party plans to prioritize for the next election. One of these missions is to ensure that the UK becomes the swiftest expanding major economy by the completion of the first term of a Labour government.
Sir Keir Starmer also outlined his party’s intentions to establish the country as a “clean energy superpower” and to tackle health inequalities as additional major priorities in the event of a Labour victory. He expressed confidence that his plan would enable Britain to reclaim “its future back”.
The speech was designed to persuade voters that Labour is a credible option for governance. Although policy specifics were not extensively discussed, they are scheduled to be released later in the year. It was noteworthy, however, that the Labour leader referred to a “decade of renewal,” indicating that he is already considering the possibility of a second term in government.
When questioned by journalists, Sir Keir expressed his desire to remain “humble” and avoid taking victory for granted, while acknowledging that the problems he highlighted would not be easily resolved within a five-year period. According to recent opinion polls, Labour is ahead of the Conservatives by approximately 20%, indicating that the party is poised to win the upcoming general election which is expected to take place next year.
Sir Keir described the five missions as the “backbone of the Labour manifesto and the pillars of the next Labour government.” These missions include:
- achieving the “highest sustained growth” among the G7 nations
- making Britain a “clean energy superpower” by eliminating fossil fuels from all electricity generation by 2030
- enhancing the NHS
- reforming the justice system
- raising education standards.
Sir Keir’s forthcoming speech, scheduled for Monday, will focus on the economy and will include a “round table” discussion with select business leaders. He confirmed his support for the substantial increase in corporation tax, which is set to take effect in April, while also noting that the foremost concern of businesses was the absence of stability rather than the tax hike itself.
Sir Keir Starmer’s shift towards more centrist policies and language has drawn criticism from both the left of his own party and the Conservatives. Some argue that his moves are an attempt to attract former Conservative voters, but this could leave him vulnerable to accusations of lacking clear principles and beliefs.
Addressing the audience on Thursday morning, Sir Keir said his “mission-driven government” would “restore our ambition, raise our sights above the quick fixes, the pandering to the noisy crowd, the short-termism that will only ever provide the sticking plaster”.
He argued that Britain was held back by “cynicism” and “short-term obsessions”.
“We lurch from crisis to crisis, always reacting, always behind the curve,” he told supporters.
Sir Keir’s statement suggests that he is trying to strike a balance between government intervention and free market principles in his economic policy as he stated that his approach to the economy would be neither “state control” nor “pure free markets”.
“I’m not concerned about whether investment or expertise comes from the public or private sector – I just want to get the job done,” he said.