The Independent View: Asking business leaders to think again

This week, leaders of some of the UK’s biggest businesses came out in support of George Osborne’s plans to reverse Labour’s proposed National Insurance rise. In a letter to the Telegraph, they argue that the reversal, to be funded by an extra £6 billion’s worth of efficiency savings, is needed to protect jobs keep Britain’s economic recovery on track.

38 Degrees has launched a campaign to persuade these business leaders to change their minds. We’re concerned that their outcry might have less to do with concerns about job-losses, and more to do with the effect that the increases in their financial contribution as employers will have on their profit margins.

We’re encouraging people to write to any of the 68 signatories of the Telegraph letter, to ask them to take into account the wider effects of the Conservative Chancellor’s proposals.

A reversal in planned rises in National Insurance might look like good news for ordinary voters but National Insurance payments are a crucial source of finance for vital public services, pensions and payments to those who are sick and unemployed. Although George Osborne has claimed that efficiency savings will make up for the shortfall in funds, these plans have gained heavy criticism for being over-optimistic.

The Chief Executives of major companies may not rely on the public services funded by National Insurance. But it is likely that their employees and customers, who are people earning normal salaries, will.

Join the campaign to stop business leaders putting profits before public services, here:

Katy Wells is from 38 Degrees. The Independent View‘ is a slot on Lib Dem Voice which allows those from beyond the party to contribute to debates we believe are of interest to LDV’s readers. Please email [email protected] if you are interested in contributing.

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This entry was posted in Op-eds and The Independent View.


  • It is getting bigger?

    The Conservative party today kept up the pressure on the government over its plans to increase national insurance, announcing the names of a further 23 business leaders who had signed a letter opposing the tax rise, taking the number to more than 100.

    Among the latest additions to the business leaders speaking out against the proposals are the former Labour donor and millionaire rice importer Moni Varma and the head of betting chain William Hill, Ralph Topping.

    With the stand-off between business and Labour intensifying, the new names bring the total to 104 business chiefs, who between them employ more than one million people.

  • You mean the companies they own or run employ over 1 millionpeople . e.g. Stuart Rose doesn’t directly employ all M&S’s staff himself

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