A Strong Economy
With the Conservatives we’ve seen our economy grow, with rising wages and unemployment at a historic low.
To make a success of Brexit and deliver the change people voted for we need to make the right choices on our economy.
We know businesses are at the heart of a successful economy. That’s why we will continue to back businesses with lower taxes, better infrastructure and strike new post-Brexit free trade deals around the world to make people better off here at home.
And we’ll help people with the cost of living by making sure people keep more of the money they earn through keeping their taxes low.
By doing this we’ll keep our economy strong, create more higher paying jobs, fund spending on our shared priorities like our NHS, schools and police and get Britain back on the road to a brighter future.
Taking action on this issue
Supporting working families
Since 2010, the Conservatives have helped more than 1,000 people on average into work every day.
We have focused, over the past decade, on making sure that work always pays – particularly for those most in need of support. We have raised the minimum wage significantly and introduced and consistently raised the National Living Wage. We have doubled the personal allowance to £12,500, so that everyone gets to earn a decent amount before they are taxed. And we have made sure the state pension keeps pace with earnings.
In our first months, we announced an increase in the National Living Wage to two thirds of average earnings, currently forecast at £10.50 an hour, and widened its reach to everyone over 21. That means an average pay rise of £4,000 per year for four million people by 2024.
To help young people get a foot on the employment ladder, we abolished employers’ National Insurance Contributions for under-21s and apprentices under 25.
Conservatives tax guarantee
We promise not to raise the rates of income tax, National Insurance or VAT. This is a tax guarantee that will protect the incomes of hard-working families across the next Parliament.
We not only want to freeze taxes, but to cut them too. We will raise the National Insurance threshold to £9,500 next year – representing a tax cut for 31 million workers. Our ultimate ambition is to ensure that the first £12,500 you earn is completely free of tax – which would put almost £500 per year in people’s pockets.
We will use our freedom from the EU to improve the UK’s tax regime – not least by abolishing the tampon tax.
Helping out parents
We want to give parents the freedom, support and choice to look after their children in the way that works best for them. We will establish a new £1 billion fund to help create more high quality, affordable childcare, including before and after school and during the school holidays.
For many families, energy costs are a major source of financial pressure. We will keep our existing energy cap and introduce new measures to lower bills. We will also give the Competition and Markets Authority enhanced powers to tackle consumer rip-offs and bad business practices.
We recognise that water bills can be a major source of financial pressure, so will extend the water rebate for those in the South West.
Protecting our pensioners
On entering Government in 2010, the Conservatives acted decisively to protect the UK’s pensioners. The ‘triple lock’ we introduced has meant that those who have worked hard and put in for decades can be confident that the state will be there to support them when they need it. We will keep the triple lock, the winter fuel payment, the older person’s bus pass and other pensioner benefits, ensuring that older people have the security and dignity they deserve. We recognise the value of free TV licences for over-75s and believe they should be funded by the BBC.
A number of workers, disproportionately women, who earn between £10,000 and £12,500 have been missing out on pension benefits because of a loophole affecting people with net pay pension schemes. We will conduct a comprehensive review to look at how to fix this issue.