Published On: Wed, Oct 30th, 2019

Labour’s £200billion plan to renationalise industries would ‘directly affect pensioners’ | Personal Finance | Finance

Campaign Manager for TaxPayers’ Alliance, Duncan Simpson, spoke to about impact of Labour’s manifesto plans on the taxpayer. During the Labour Party’s conference in Brighton, Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell revealed proposals to renationalise industries in the UK. Mr McDonnell outlined his Marxist ideas to take water and energy utilities, train companies and the Royal Mail into public ownership.

He told “The CBI had a report out that almost £200billion would be the cost of taking over industries like water, rail and so forth.

“Actually running those in public hands would be very costly.

“A lot of pension funds in this country are invested in some of the largest companies in the UK.

“So obviously renationalisation of these industries would directly affect a lot of pensioners, or soon to be pensioners, who have a lot of their income tied up in these companies.”

READ MORE: Pension warning: Millions could miss out on thousands in retirement

He continued: “Additionally if there are plans for a 10 percent expropriation of shares in listed companies, which aren’t nationalised, and 10 percent of shares eventually go to workers who then have the more direct say over the running of the company in theory.

“Again that affects basically anyone who has a pension that isn’t derived from taxes.

“So teachers, doctors, nurses, everybody else, and there are almost 20 million people have a private sector pension would be directly affected by such changes.”

The recent Confederation of British Industry (CBI) report claimed the price tag for Labour’s renationalisation plans would be “beyond eye-watering”.

Mr McDonnell also insisted Labour would offer a shorter working week with no loss of pay.

He said: “That means a strong trade union movement and collective bargaining. But also, in the new public services we’re creating, it means management by workers and service users rather than by remote bureaucrats in Whitehall.

“In large companies it means a third of directors being elected by workers and a tenth of shares being owned by those workers. It means doubling the size of our cooperative sector so wherever you work you will have a stake and a say.

“And it’s not just about a fulfilling life at work. We should work to live, not live to work. Thanks to past Labour governments but mainly thanks to the trade union movement, the average full-time working week fell from nearly 65 hours in the 1860s to 43 hours in the 1970s.

“As society got richer, we could spend fewer hours at work. But in recent decades progress has stalled. People in our country today work the longest average full-time hours in Europe apart from Greece and Austria. And since the 1980s the link between increasing productivity matched by expanding free time has been broken. It’s time to put that right.”

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