SNP To Launch Manifesto & Corbyn's In Glasgow

28 May 2017, 10:17

Jeremy Corbyn and Nicola Sturgeon

Nicola Sturgeon will set out a plans to free up an extra £118 billion of public spending UK-wide over the course of the parliament when she launches her party's General Election manifesto this week, according to the SNP.

The proposals will form part of a "responsible and credible'' fiscal plan to grow the economy, safeguard public services and protect household incomes, the party said.

The SNP said it would aim to balance the current budget by the end of the Parliament in 2021/22, stabilise net borrowing at the level it was at before the financial crash and see debt begin to fall as a share of GDP from 2019/20.

It said its ideas will be a "credible alternative'' to proposals from the Conservatives and Labour.

Speaking ahead of the launch in Perth on Tuesday, SNP leader Ms Sturgeon said: "Now more than ever before, we need strong SNP voices to stand up to the Tories - and stand up for Scotland - at Westminster.

"Both the Conservatives and Labour's economic plans at this election have unravelled already under scrutiny from the IFS (Institute for Fiscal Studies), which has confirmed that a vote for the Tories is a vote for more cuts.

"The SNP manifesto will set out a clear alternative to continued Tory austerity - and the unnecessary, ideological and self-defeating cuts that have held back the economy, damaged public services and hammered millions by squeezing family budgets.

"We will not follow the Tories in their blind pursuit of a pre-election surplus to spend in five years time, or Labour in their reckless plans to hike taxes without knowing if they will secure any additional revenue.

"The SNP will put forward a responsible and credible fiscal plan that will free up an additional #118 billion of public investment to grow the economy, safeguard our public services, protect household incomes and put the UK's finances back on a stable footing.

"If that money was rightly spent on public services and supporting low-paid households, it could inject a further #10 billion over the next parliament into spending in Scotland.

"The Tories' plans have nothing to do with strong public finances and are all about their desire to cut benefits, cut pensions and shrink our public services like the NHS and the police . It is only the SNP that can keep the Tories in check.''

Jeremy Corbyn will accuse the Scottish National Party of "passing on Tory austerity'' as he takes Labour's General Election campaign to Glasgow on Sunday.

With Labour trailing a poor third behind the SNP and Conservatives in Scotland, Mr Corbyn is hoping to boost his party's chances of improving on their solitary seat north of the border in the 2015 election.

Speaking to a rally in the Old Fruitmarket, Mr Corbyn will pitch the June 8 vote as a choice for Scots between continued austerity under the SNP and Conservatives or a move to a Labour government which would deliver a £10-an-hour minimum wage and ban zero-hours contracts.

"Scots have a choice in this election - a Labour government which will govern for the many not the few, or the continuation of Tory and SNP austerity,'' he will say.

"Where the SNP simply passes on Tory austerity without putting up a fight, Labour will transform our economy through investment and development. No more tax breaks for the richest and big business.

"While the SNP obsesses over how to get another divisive independence, by contrast Labour believes that together we're stronger. We're on the side of the majority of Scots who don't want a second referendum.

"I'm asking the people of Scotland not to take a gamble on your future. We don't have to accept the politics of division and austerity. Things can, and they will, change under a Labour government for the many not the few.''

Mr Corbyn will say that a £10 minimum wage would directly benefit 500,000 Scots, while a ban on zero-hours contracts would help 60,000 workers north of the border.