Labour Set Out Budget Demands

Ed Balls, Shadow Chancellor

Ed Balls, Shadow Chancellor

Labour leader Ed Miliband and shadow chancellor Ed Balls have called for a fresh tax on bank bonuses and a cut in VAT on petrol in the Labour budget plan.

Ed Miliband outlined the measures, which he claims would best grow the economy, ahead of the government’s budget next week.

They called for more private sector jobs, help for the young unemployed and help for the construction industry.

However, the Conservatives say that Labour has made £12bn of unfunded spending commitments in the last four weeks. It is said that Labour’s economic credibility is being questioned by the Conservatives.

At a press conference, Miliband and Balls said last year’s windfall tax on bankers’ bonuses had raised £3.5bn, and a repeat would help promote growth.

Together they called for the VAT rise – from 17.5% to 20% – to be reversed on petrol as prices top £1.30 a litre, a measure they say can be funded by extra income from the bank levy.

The Labour leader claims that Labour’s plans could create another 110,000 jobs.

Mr Miliband commented: “As a matter of simple fairness, at a time when everyone else is facing tax rises, it is completely wrong for this Tory-led government to choose to cut taxes for the banks.

“The banks, who helped create the financial crisis, must now help return our economy to growth.”

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