14/03/2017 House of Commons

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Live coverage of the Tuesday's proceedings in the House of Commons, including the final day of debate on the Spring Budget 2017.

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green energy to the construction. My noble friend makes a good point and


through him, can I congratulate the business involved that as my


honourable friend. With the government 's plans, to improve the


energy infrastructure, what positive impact will that have. On small


businesses when it comes to electricity cost. The primary effect


will be to keep the it down for small businesses. There is an


excellent company and a new car is a pride chain that have excellent


vacancies that will be on offer in Mike seventh annual Pendle jobs


that. What more can we do to support the nuclear supply chain. Mr Speaker


one of the things we have done to support the supply chain is to have


a continuing commitment and it will benefit his constituents and through


a network of training colleges, we will make sure that we grow the


nuclear skills. I found the minister was a touch complacent in his


earlier answer on smart meters, given this is going to coursed the


taxpayer 11 billion by the end of the Parliament, what is he going to


do by the fact that it doesn't work when you try to switch supplier. It


will save ?47 billion by the end of that decade. When will the business


rate review commenced an report, in the light that sticking plasters


last week do little for the small businesses in York. The review will


report in due course and in the not too distant future. Thank you Mr


Speaker, the Digital strategy is a key component in the government 's


industrial strategy, can he do better than decent MS and tummy


which countries have committed to working Great Grimsby as part of the


skills partnership. It is about invitation to businesses to come


forward and pose to the government what is required to grow the jobs


and skills there. That is the aim of all skills. They have felled to


declare much more complimentary today, tenants are protesting


outside the office, how long will they keep failing to do their duty


and not facing up to the situation? The honourable gentleman knows that


the Commissioner for Public avoidance stated that the panel did


consider that there were no conflicts of interest in this case


that would preclude Mr Newby from doing his job. We must now remove


on. Statements, the Prime Minister. CHEERING


Thank you Mr Speaker had with permission I would like to make a


statement on last weeks European Council. And the next steps in


preparing to trigger Article 50, and beginning in the process of leaving


the European Union. The summit began by re-electing Donald Tusk as


president of the European Council, I welcomed this because we have a


close working relationships with Donald Tusk and we recognise the


strong contribution he has made in office. In the main business of the


council we discuss the challenge of managing mass migration, the threats


from organised crime and instability in the Western Balkans, and the


measures needed to boost your's growth and competitiveness which


will remain important for us as we build a new relationship between the


EU and a self global Britain. In each case who are able to show once


again how Britain will continue to play a leading role in Europe long


after we have left the European Union. First on migration, I


welcomed the progress and in permitting the action plan which we


had agreed at the informal EU summit in Malta last week. This included


Italy strengthening asylum processes and increasing returns and Greece


implementing to work the EU - Turkey deal where the EU is providing


additional staff to interview Afghan and Iraqi and Eritrea National is. I


argued we must do more to dismantle the vile people smuggling rings who


profit from the migrants mystery and who are subjecting many to


imaginable abuses. With coordinated and committed action, we can make a


difference. Indeed, just last month, in operation between our national


crime agency and the Hellenic Coast Guard to the arrest of 19 members of


organised immigration crime group in Greece. As I have argued before, we


need a managed, controlled and truly global approach and that is exactly


what this council agreed. We need to help ensure refugees claim asylum in


the first safe country that they reach, and help those countries


support the refugee so they don't have too make the Paris journey to


Europe. And we need a better overall approach to managing economic


migration, one which recognises that all countries have the right to


control their borders. Mr Speaker, engaging our African partners in


this global approach will be hosting in London in May. Turning to the


deterrent in situation in the Western Balkans, I have made clear


my concern the risks that this presents to the region and to the


wider collective security. Organised criminals and terrorists are ready


to exploit these vulnerabilities and we are seeing increasingly brazen


interference by Russia and others. In light of the alleged Montenegro


coup plot, I called on the council to do more on destabilising Russian


disinformation campaigns and to raise the disability of the Western


commitment to this region. The UK will lead the way. The Foreign


Secretary will be visiting Russia in the coming weeks, where I expect him


to set out the concerns about the reports of Russian interference in


the affairs of Montenegro. We will provide strategic expertise to the


EU institutions to counter disinformation campaigns in the


region had we will host the 2018 Western Balkans summit, and in a run


at two that summit, we will enhance the security cooperation for the


West Balkans can partners, including on organised crime, anti-corruption


and cyber security. More broadly I also reemphasised, the importance


that the UK places on Nato. As the bedrock of our collective defence.


And I urged other member states to start investing more in line of the


Nato target so that every country plays its full part in sharing the


burden. For it is only by investing properly in our defence that we can


ensure that we are properly equipped to keep our people say. Turning to


growth and competitiveness as I have said, I want us to build a new


relationship with you that will give that accompanies the maximum freedom


to trade with and operating the European market and allow European


businesses to do the same here. So a successful and competitive European


market in the future will remain in our national interest and that this


council, I called for further steps to complete the single market and


the digital single market. LAUGHTER I also... I also welcomed the


completion of the free trade agreement between EU and Canada and


I pressed for an agreement with Japan in the coming months. For


these agreements, just wait for it, these agreements will lay the


foundation for our continued trade relationships in this country as we


leave the EU. CHEERING At the same time you'll also seed


opportunities to forge new trade deals and reach out beyond the


borders of Europe to build relationships with our friends any


allies alike. This weekend we announced a two day conference with


the largest ever trade delegation from Qatar, to build on the ?5


billion of trade that we already do with Qatar every year. We will


always strengthen the unique and proud global relationships that we


forge with a diverse and vibrant alliance of the Commonwealth that we


celebrated on Commonwealth date yesterday. Finally, last night the


bill on Article 50 successfully completed its passage through both


houses unchanged. It will now proceed to Royal assent in the


coming days, so we remain on track with a timetable that I set out six


months ago. And I will return to this house before the end of this


month to notify and I have formally triggered Article 50 and begun the


process through which the United Kingdom will leave the European


Union. This will be a defining moment bra whole country as we begin


to forge a new relationship with Europe and a new role for ourselves


in the world. We will be a strong self-governing global Britain. With


control once again over our borders and our laws. And we will use this


moment of opportunity to build a stronger economy and a fairer


society, so that we secure both the right deal for Britain abroad, and a


better deal for ordinary working people at home. And Mr Speaker, the


new relationship of the EU that we negotiate, will work for the whole


of the United Kingdom. That is why we had been working closely with the


devolved administrations, including, including the Scottish Government.


Listening to their proposals and recognising the many areas of common


ground that we have. Such as protecting workers' rights, and our


security from crime and terrorism. So Mr Speaker, it is not a moment to


play politics will create uncertainty. -- or create


uncertainty. It is a moment to bring our country together. To honour the


will of the British people, and to shape for them a brighter future and


a better Britain and I commend this statement to the house. Jeremy


Corbyn. Thank you Mr Speaker, I would like to thank the Prime


Minister Francois is copy of the statement. The passing into law of


the unification of withdrawal, marks an historic step. Later this month,


the triggering of Article 50, a process that will shape this


country's future. There is no doubt, that if the wrong decisions are made


we will pay the price for decades to come. So now more than ever, Britain


needs an inclusive government, that listens and acts accordingly.


However, all of the signs are, that we have a complacent government,


complacent with our economy, complacent with people's rights and


complacent about the future of this country. I urged the Prime Minister


to listen to the collective wisdom of this Parliament. And to give this


house a full opportunity to scrutinise the Article 50 deal with


a meaningful final vote. The people's representatives deserve


better than take it or leave it and if we are to protect jobs and living


standards, and if we are to protect the future prosperity of this


country, the Government needs to secure tariff free access to the


single European market. Mr Speaker, the Prime Minister has already made


the threat to our negotiating partners to turn Britain into a


deregulated tax haven. Is that what she means by global Britain? When


the Foreign Secretary says no deal with the new would be perfectly OK,


it simply isn't good enough. -- with the EU. Far from taking back


control, leaving Britain to world Trade Organisation rules would mean


losing control, jobs and losing out. So when the Prime Minister says a


bad deal is better than no deal, let me be clear, no deal is a bad steel.


Such a complacent strategy would punish business, hit jobs and


devastate public services on which people rely. The Prime Minister says


she is seeking to secure a future free trade deal with the EU after


initial negotiations are completed. But if that is the strategy, it is


essential that this government stops being complacent and focuses on


securing a transitional agreement with the EU at the earliest


opportunity. That would at least give the British people and


businesses some short-term clarity in this period. The Prime Minister


said she wanted to provide certainty on EU nationals are as soon as


possible. So, then, why have they voted down every Labour attempt to


bring certainty to EU nationals who make such a national of -- massive


contribution to our society? These people are not bargaining chips.


They are mothers, fathers, wives, husbands, valued members of our


community. The Government could and should have acted months ago. I


agree with the Prime Minister, now is not the time to create


uncertainty or play politics. She should tell that to the EU migrants


in Britain who have no idea what their future holds because of


decisions made by her government. Refugees, is the Prime Minister


saying that she is content for refugees to remain in camps in


Libya? Is that a safe country? Or for Greece, Italy and Malta to


shoulder the entire burden of refugees from North Africa and the


Middle East. Whilst we welcome the conference she is proposing on


Somalia, we need to know what support Britain is offering to all


of those countries. Does the Prime Minister still believe we have a


collective responsibility on the issue of refugees? The Prime


Minister said that she argued about tackling vile smuggling rings and


people being subjected to unimaginable abuse. Does she not


agree that her argument would be so much stronger if her government had


been prepared to accept some of the victims of that unimaginable abuse,


for example the children who should have been accepted through the dubs


amendment? Mr Speaker, as we move towards the triggering of Article


50, there is much uncertainty about Britain's future. A responsible


government would set a positive tone with our negotiating partners and


would move to protect our economy, workers and citizens at the earliest


opportunity. Instead, we have a reckless government playing fast and


loose with the British economy. We will fight for jobs and the economy


using every parliamentary mechanism available and the Government should


welcome mat scrutiny. -- that scrutiny. The right honourable


gentleman mentioned a range of issues. He spoke again about the


issue of EU nationals. As I have said in this House and as has been


said by others from this dispatch box, we do want to ensure that the


issue of the staters of EU nationals living here in the UK is dealt with


at an early stage in the negotiations. -- the status. But we


also have a consideration for the UK nationals who are living in the


European Union. He said that the EU Commission was living here are


individuals who have contributed to our society. Indeed they are but so


the UK nationals living in the member states of the European Union


are also individuals who have contributed to their society and


economy and I want to ensure that their status is also ensured and we


hope and expect that this will be an issue we can address at an early


stage. He talked about the need to come forward and be clear about the


need for a transitional period. I refer him to the speech I gave in


Lancaster house in January and to the White Paper that we published.


The need for implementation periods, so we have a smooth and orderly


process of Brexit, is indeed one of the objectives that was set out in


that speech and in that document. He talked about refugees from North


Africa and the Middle East. What we want to ensure is that people don't


feel the need to make the often dangerous, life-threatening journey


across the central Mediterranean. Many of these people, more than


three quarters of the people who are doing this, are not refugees but


economic migrants. We need to ensure we are providing facilities and


working with countries within Africa, which the European Union is


itself doing and other countries are doing, to ensure that the


circumstances are such that people don't try to make a life-threatening


journey. But we also need internationally to be able to bring


a better distinction between refugees and economic migrants so


that we can give better support to those who are refugees. He taught


about the vile smuggling rings and appeared to suggest that the UK


government was doing absolutely nothing to break the vile smuggling


rings. In my statement, I quoted a very recent example of the work of


the National Crime Agency, which I might say it is a Conservative


government that set up the National Crime Agency, that set of the


organised immigration crime task force and is dealing with these


issues and while he talks about abuses and the movement of people


and the trafficking of people, it is this government that brought in the


Modern Slavery Bill act and I'm very proud that it is this government


that did it. And finally, he referred to what global Britain


needs. I'll tell him. It is about a strong, self-governing Britain, a


Britain that is trading around the world with old friends and new


allies alike but it is about a Britain that is proud to take its


place on the world stage. Thank you, Mr Speaker. My I congratulate my


right honourable friend not only on her statement just now and the way


she dispatched the Leader of the Opposition but also on the passage


of the EU withdrawal bill. Would she accept that now is the time for the


United Kingdom to do all the things that she herself has recommended in


her statement but, in addition to that, to take urgent legal advice in


respect of the legal warnings given by Lord hope of Craighead to be sure


that we don't have any unforeseen further attempts to undo the EU


withdrawal bill in the courts? I can assure my honourable friend that as


we move ahead with this, as we have at every stage, we have, of course,


taken appropriately or advice but, as he will know, we do not discuss


that on the floor of this House. Me I begin by thanking the Prime


Minister for advance notice of her statement and agree with her how


valuable it was in the large -- that the large part of the EU council was


given to jobs, growth and competitiveness and that is really


welcome to the whole of the UK, as across all of the 27 member states.


The single European market really matters to all of us, given it is


the largest single market in the world. The last time the prime


minister came to the dispatch box from an EU council meeting, I asked


what issues you raise a half of the Scottish government and its


priorities and she couldn't give a single example then, so I'm going to


try the same question again. Given that this was the last EU council


since the invoking of Article 50, can she give a single example - just


one, please - of a single issue that was raised on the half of the


Scottish government or its priorities at this council meeting?


Goodness, there is a lot of hubbub from the government benches on this.


Perhaps they are also keen to hear from the Prime Minister, who didn't


make a single mention during her statement of what she raised a half


of the Scottish government. We will all wait with bated breath to hear


the Prime Minister answer that question. While the Prime Minister


was in Brussels, what discussions did she have about her Brexit


timetable? Can she confirmed that the plan is to negotiate a deal and


after that, there needs to be time. Time for ratification, time for


agreement across the European Union and its institutions. Will she


confirm from the dispatch box that that is indeed her plan? The Prime


Minister has decided, for one reason or another - I can't imagine why -


to delay the invoking of Article 50. Last July, we were told by the Prime


Minister herself, and I'm sure she remembers saying these very words,


that she would not trigger Article 50 until she had, and I quote, her


own words, a UK wide approach. Now, she knows that she has no agreement


with the devolved administration, despite months of compromised


suggestions from the Scottish Government. So will the UK


government, even at this very late stage, use the next days to secure a


compromise, UK wide approach? Or does she still planned to plough on


regardless, even though she knows what the consequences of that will


mean? Thank you. He asks what issues that were of relevance of the


Scottish Government and to Scottish people were raised that this


European council. I can answer him - jobs, growth and competitiveness.


Those issues that matter to the Scottish people but also matter to


the people of the whole of the UK. He also talked about whether there


was a discussion of the European council about the timetable for the


discussions on the negotiations of Article 50. As I said very early on


in my statement, in the main business of council, we discuss the


challenge of managing mass migration, the threats from


organised crime, and the measures needed to boost your's growth and


competitiveness. This was a council which focused on those issues and I


was presenting the case for the United Kingdom's concerns on those


issues, including jobs, which is I've just said, matter to the people


of Scotland. Who stalks -- he talks about a single market of the


European Union. I would remind him and his colleagues once again that


the most important single market for Scotland is the single market of the


United Kingdom. Shouldn't friendly democracies with decent values rush


to reassure British citizens that they can stay on the continent, and


isn't it strongly in the economic interests of our partners to accept


our generous offer of continuing with tariff free trade on the same


basis as today? My right honourable friend makes an important point. I


think the issues of EU nationals in the UK -- and UK nationals and the


question of the trading relationship in the future is not a one-sided


argument, it is actually about benefits for the EU as well and I


very much think that is the case in relation to trade. This isn't about


something that just works for the UK. I believe the right trading deal


for the UK, the sort of free and open access my right honourable


friend talks about, will be good for the rest of the EU as well. The


Prime Minister has spoken many times about the importance of achieving a


good deal from the negotiations that the country is about to embark on.


Yet, in recent days, the Foreign Secretary has said that leaving with


no deal would be perfectly OK, while the international trade secretary


has said that not achieving a deal would be bad. Would the Prime


Minister care to adjudicate and tell the House which of those ministers


is speaking for the government? I can say to him, I am optimistic that


we are going to get a good deal for the United Kingdom in trading with


the European Union. No deal may be a bad deal for both the EU 27 and for


the UK but it is very far from the worst deal for the UK if there was


no route to a future free trading arrangement with the European Union.


The deal is not in the gift either of her government, however hard they


are trying to deliver it, or of this Parliament, but of the European


Parliament and our partners, so no deal remains a real possibility. It


seems that her government is now preparing for it. Will that


preparation into the opportunity for individuals and businesses to be


able to make their own dispositions in that possibility? First of all, I


was clear in the Lancaster House speech that no deal was better than


a bad deal. I'm optimistic that we will be able to negotiate a good


deal. He is absolutely right, of course, there are other parties to


this. It is not as what we say. There will be a negotiation about


that trade arrangement and in coming to that trade arrangement and


agreement, I can ensure him that I and others across the Parliament,


the Secretary of State is exiting the EU, the Secretary of State the


business, are talking to businesses across the UK to understand the


issues that are most important of them. The Prime Minister has said


again just now that no deal is better than a bad deal but what


possible deal is worse than no deal and can she described it? I have to


say to the honourable lady, we are about to enter into a negotiation


with the remaining 27 members of the EU. As part of that, we will be


negotiating a trade deal for our future relationship with the EU. I


confidently expect that we will get a good deal and somebody says "You


hope" from a secondary position. It is precisely because of the answer I


gave to the Member for Wokingham. This is not about a one-sided


negotiation, about what is going to sit the UK, it is about what is


right for that relationship for the future of the UK with the EU and a


good trade deal for the UK is a good trade deal for the EU.


Can I welcome the Prime Minister 's announcement that the UK


strengthening its contribution to cyber security at countering


disinformation. Also the Foreign Secretary 's forthcoming visit to


Russia. But with Russia spending every billion dollars on media


outfits and patrol factories, is she satisfied that the EU's East Strat,


organisation account is fake news and misinformation from the Kremlin


is sufficiently resourced and what progress was made on setting up the


further sectors to identify and counteract Russian propaganda that


was mentioned in the pre-briefings to the council. My right honourable


friend raises an important point, Naholo Schrotter jujitsu


indications, this is an area where the UK does have particular


expertise and experience. That is why we will be making that expertise


available to the European Union in order to be able to enhance the work


that they are doing to counter the disinformation campaigns. Can I tell


the Prime Minister that it is not just in Scotland where there is a


fear that the right wing of her party is dictating the terms of this


debate and pushing us towards a Brexit deal that favours London and


the South over the North. Can I ask her to did the no more, establish a


Brexit committee of the regions and nations, to give places like greater


Manchester equal and fair representation in this crucial


debate. As I have said repeatedly in this house, this government is


negotiating a deal, that we will be Wiggo shooting a deal that would be


good for the whole of the United Kingdom. That is why we had been


listing to businesses and others from across the whole of the United


Kingdom, yes the devolved administration but also people from


regions of England and businesses from across the whole of the United


Kingdom to understand the interests and what we need to be taken into


account. As my right honourable friend launches into the


negotiations I wonder if she has had time to consider the excellent House


of Lords report that says we have no legal negation to pay any money


whatsoever to the European Union, and does she share my view, that


this is an excellent basis for beginning the negotiations. I can


assure my honourable friend that I have noted the House of Lords report


on this particular matter, as he will know, when people voted on the


23rd of June last year. I think they were very clear that they did not


want to continue year after year to be paying huge sums of money to the


European Union. Mr Speaker I thank the Prime Minister for advanced site


of a statement. Given that she is interpreting the will of the people


and not enacting it, history will declare, that last night she


demonstrates contempt for this place, and for the British people.


The Brexit deal, the Brexit deal, the Brexit deal is an unwritten,


unknown deal. It is a deal that will be signed off by someone, the only


question days, with be signed off by a handful of politicians or by the


whole of the people? Does she agree with me it should be signed off by


the whole of the people? Can I say to the right honourable gentleman


that I think what he says. Comes a little strange from a party, seen


tremendous there was a time where the Liberal Democrats were going out


there telling everyone that they were going to have an in- out


referendum on the European union, and now we have had it, and are not


willing to accept the result that the British people gave them. That


is why we are putting it into practice, we are delivering the will


of the British people. My right honourable friend the Prime Minister


has been very clear that the United Kingdom is leaving the European


Union, we are not leaving Europe. A strong and prosperous European


Union, can she agree with me, that a strong stable united United Kingdom


is also in the interests of the European Union and that she will


vigorously resist anyone who uses this moment to try and destroy our


precious United Kingdom? I absolutely agree with my honourable


friend, as he has said and I have said before, a strong remain


European Union in 27 will be wanting to see the EU strong. We'll so what


is he a strong United Kingdom playing its role as a global


Britain. It is important that we keep the union of the United Kingdom


together, there is much that binds us and I don't want to see anybody


doing constitutional gameplaying with the future of the United


Kingdom. Can I congratulate the Prime Minister on bringing the


country together? And uniting Scotland behind the First Minister.


She was asked, by my right honourable friend about what was


said last year so let me cite the Tory Bible, the Daily Telegraph on


the 15th of July. Theresa may has indicated that she will not trigger


the formal process of leaving the EU until there is an agreed UK approach


backed by Scotland. Was that misreporting by the Daily Telegraph,


Miss Peake in by the Prime Minister or is she still working on it? As


the right honourable gentleman knows full well, we have been in


discussions with the Scottish Government and the other involved


administrations recognising the issues they have raised. But it lies


in the issues and concerns, but The Right Honourable gentleman, refers


to the views of the Scottish people in relation to the announcement,


either Scottish First Minister, I might remind him that the evidence


in Scotland is that the George the Scottish people do not want a second


independence referendum. Thank you Mr Speaker, can I commend my right


honourable friend's very measured response to the provocation of the


calling of another second independence referendum in Scotland.


That she is not ruling out a referendum in the future, but now is


not the right time. Can she also just point out, that the 2015


Scotland act, reserves all of the single market issues to the United


Kingdom government. These are not matters, these are matters that we


should share with Scotland in the discussion, but they are matters


reserved to the United Kingdom. As I have just said in response to The


Right Honourable gentleman, the previous question, it is the case at


the moment as I have said that the evidence is that the Scottish people


do not want a second independence referendum. As we dish it issues in


relation to access to the single market through the free trade deals


that we will be live to in, we'll be taking into it at the interest of


the whole of the United Kingdom and every part of the United Kingdom and


ensuring that deal works for everybody across the United Kingdom


including the people of Scotland. Following a successful conclusion to


the Article 50 bill last night, there are some who in Northern


Ireland will add to the uncertainty and division by calling for a poll,


they have already traded enough uncertainty and division by


collapsing the uncertainty, will she take this opportunity to tell people


that there has never been more support for the union in Northern


Ireland across all communities, and that in fact such a call, is outside


of the terms of the Belfast agreement, the very point that Sinn


Fein keep harping on about that they want in the meditation of the


agreements. -- in the mentation. The Right Honourable gentleman is right,


there are a set of circumstances which the Secretary of State for


Northern Ireland has looked at this issue, and it is not right to have a


order poll at this stage. What we should all be focusing on is


bringing the parties together to ensure that we continue to see the


devolved administration in Northern Ireland, working as it has done in


the interest of people in Northern Ireland, we want to see that


devolved administration being formed and that is what all of the party


should be looking for at the moment. Mr Speaker isn't it clear from


European negotiations, that a lot of the detail when to be finalised


until the end of this process and therefore the timetable set out


yesterday, by the First Minister, to have a premature second independence


referendum is an excuse, not a reason, and shouldn't we indeed


listen to the right honourable gentleman, the member for Gordon,


when he referred to the last independence referendum as a once in


a generation of opportunity. Well I am grateful to my right honourable


friend, as he rightly points out, of course, we have a timetable for


negotiation which is up to two years. It is possible that the


details of that negotiation will not be finalised until close to the end


of that period. And he is entirely right of course, those in Scotland


to talk about having a second independence referendum should


remember what the right honourable gentleman said, that it was a once


in a generation vote that took place in September 2014, it seems a


generation now is less than three-year 's. Mr Speaker the Prime


Minister has said, that no deal is better than a bad deal. And whilst


we all wish her well in getting the best possible deal, for the UK, will


she now publish what the effects would be of crashing out of the


European Union on WTO rule so that we can have a debate in the country


about her assertion that no deal is better than a bad deal. I say to The


Right Honourable Lady, I'm grateful for the comment that she has made


about being in support of the government in looking ahead and


trying to negotiate the best possible deal for the United


Kingdom. That is precisely what we will be doing.


I welcome the Prime Minister's positive approach to establishing a


new cooperative relationship with Europe, and the sensible mess of


planning contingency planning. Can the Prime Minister tell us how much


that contingency planning will cost? It is important that contingency


planning does take place. We have to look at the variety of scenarios and


a lot of work is being done by the Department and will be done by other


departments as well. I think what is important, is that we ensure that


work is done properly. So that the governance has the best possible of


the nation in which to negotiate our relationship for the future. After


lecturing the other European leaders on how they should complete the


single market, the sheer member that she had already thrown in the towel


on Britain's membership of the single market, and would she admit


what an error it was. For her to have given the Scottish First


Minister exactly the excuse she was looking for, for their opportunistic


second referendum? First of all their was no lecturing that took


place, there was a view around the table, I encouraged that, and others


contributed, that it is important that the European Union continues to


complete the single market, but actually there is work yet to be


done. That continues to work on trade agents that other parts of the


country and the reason why I can ask them to do that is because it would


be good for the United Kingdom in our future relationship with the


European Union. So this is something that will be good for us. I have


always been clear, I have always been clear that we will trigger


Article 50 by the end of March and that is exactly what we will do.


There has been much speculation about the divorce from the European


Union has two how much money would be needed. I'm afraid I'm to


disagree with multiple friend, from North East Somerset. Since we


joined, the EC in 1973, we have paid in 108 ?84 billion -- 184 billion.


That is the net contribution, the actual amount we have paid, after


the money back. Well when you have a divorcee split it into, so that


would be ?92 billion that should be paid back to us, did the Prime


Minister have the chance to bring this up at the conference? LAUGHTER


We want our money back. I'm tempted to say to my honourable friend nice


try by date thing that was application for a job that the


Treasury. -- but I don't think that was an application.


The honourable gentleman seems to be able to contain his misery. Not


everyone shares her it is as for the imminent application of the EU -


Canada agreement, not least, because CETA's new court investors


discipline, still causes problems. Does she regard R as a blueprint


for the trade deals that the government thinks she could so


easily agree. -- CETA as a blueprint. And how will she protect


things if that is the case. There is no blueprint, I have said


consistently of the last seven months or so that we are not looking


to adopt a model for another countries relationships. We will


have a deal that is right for the UK. Did my right on the friends


detect any strong support at the EU Council for a separatist Scotland


remaining in the EU. I can honestly say that I did not


detect any such support in the European Council. Since the country


is almost evenly divided about leaving the EU, how does the Prime


Minister try and resolve this? I've never known this country so divided


since Suez in 1956. Can I say to the honourable gentleman, this House


chose to give a vote to the British people in the referendum on the 23rd


of June. The people of the UK voted in that referendum and the majority


voted for the UK to leave the EU. I actually think that when I talk to


people who voted to leave and people who voted to remain, the


overwhelming message is that they want the government now to get on


with the job of delivering on that vote. My right honourable friend the


Prime Minister has made it clear both from the dispatch box and the


country that she wishes to prioritise the certainty of UK


nationals living in the EU 27 and the EU nationals living here in the


UK but I have it on good authority that the EU negotiators want to


prioritise the so-called divorce settlement. Will she make it clear


to the people to whom she is negotiating that we will not


countenance British and EU citizens being used as bargaining chips in


such a way? My honourable friend is right. What we want to do is ensure


that we do see both EU citizens living here and UK citizens living


in the EU reciprocally protected in terms of their future status and I


want to see that as a discussion that will take place at an early


stage in negotiations. I recognise the point that he has made about


some of the things that have been said and I will simply say this to


him, that in my conversations with other European leaders, I believe


there is also an extent of goodwill there to deal with this issue at an


early stage. The Prime Minister lectures nationalists on the


importance of staying within unions, all the while she advocates leaving


on. She lectures our European partners on the importance of the


single market, all the while she is hell belt on our leaving it. Does


she think that this incoherence in her position might be dealt with and


she might make her own life easier if she thought again about staying


in the single market? I've said this on a number of occasions in this


House and I will repeat it here today - what we want to do is to


negotiate the best possible trading arrangement. My right honourable


friend the Member for Wokingham taught about fraction were -- tariff


free, frictionless, seamless movement of goods and trade in


services. It is wrong to think about the issue of in the single market as


just a single binary issue - either you are in it or you have no access


to its. What we want to do is ensure we have good access to the single


market, the best possible trade deal, which allows that frictionless


and, as far as possible, tariff free access. Could I particularly welcome


my right honourable friend's comments on the Balkans, an area


which has plunged Europe into horror several times over the last few


centuries? Would she confirmed that it is Britain that has insisted that


we keep the mission there going against the opposition of several of


our European partners? Indeed, my right honourable friend is


absolutely right. The UK has been playing a key role in relation to


the Western Balkans. There was a very good discussion at the European


Council, a very clear recognition around the table of the need for us


to continue to be involved in the Western Balkans, and a number of


steps that can be taken in future to ensure that we do stabilise this


region, which is in the interests of not only the countries in the


Western Balkans but the rest of us in Europe. In the spirit of this


so-called UK wide approach to Brexit, can the Prime Minister


confirmed to the House how much advance notice she intends to give


to the first ministers of Wales, Scotland and the leadership in


Northern Ireland of the date upon which she intends to invoke Article


50? We will be invoking Article 50 by the end of March. There will be a


number of processes that will take place in advance that invocation and


I can assure, as I said to this House, I will come and notify this


House when the decision is... When we have notified. At the European


Council, did the Prime Minister have a chance to pick up two issues with


the European commission and the Spanish government - one, their


attitude to the border of Gibraltar, and their attitude to those


separatists that claim that their countries could break away and


rejoin the EU? I can assure that in the discussions I've had with the


Spanish government on this matter, they are very concerned and they are


very clear that it is not possible for a country to break away from a


country that is a member of the European Union and to immediately


rejoin that European Union. This is the Rosso doctrine, which has been


reaffirmed by the European commission, so as far as Scotland is


concerned, independence would not mean membership of the European


Union, it would mean that Scotland would remain outside the European


Union. I'm sure the Prime Minister would be pleased to know that there


are millions of Labour supporters across the country who will be


delighted and share the pleasure that she has at the legal decision


taken through Parliament but did she have any chance in the council


meetings to discuss informally with EU leaders the position of our EU


citizens in... Our British citizens in other countries and are they


sticking up for our citizens there the way we are sticking up for their


citizens here? I've had a number of discussions with European leaders on


this point and that is why I said earlier in response to another


question from an honourable friend that I believe there is goodwill on


both sides to deal with this issue and to recognise the needs of UK


citizens living in other EU member states, as well as recognising the


needs of EU citizens living here in the UK. I think there is goodwill


there but it has been made clear in the past that no discussion on this


and take place until the negotiations have formally been


triggered. I welcome the Prime Minister's statement that politics


is not a game but for those of us who have fought the SNP, to the SNP


it is again. Yesterday's announcement by the first Minister


is the just the first of many we are going to hear in the weeks and


months to come. With the prime minister agree with me that it is


imperative that her government and every member of this House who


believes in Great Britain and Northern Ireland that we must


reaffirm our own constituents outside of Scotland why the United


Kingdom is important to all of us? I absolutely agree. It is important


for us to continue to confirm and reaffirmed the importance of the


United Kingdom. He says to reaffirm the importance of the United Kingdom


for constituencies outside Scotland. I think, as I did when I was in


Glasgow very recently, also we should reaffirm the importance of


the United Kingdom to Scotland and to Scotland's economy. Thank you, Mr


Speaker. I was glad to hear the prime minister say that she had been


working closely with the devolved administrations. Glad but slightly


puzzled because the joint ministerial committee on exiting the


EU is less organised than a community council. Not my words but


those of an actual participant, Mark Drakeford. How is she now ensuring


that the system of devolved governments are effective in the


Article 50 notification? The joint ministerial committee process has


been operating now for some months at various levels. It has been


bringing ministers together from the United Kingdom government, together


with the three devolved administrations, as I say, at


various levels, discussing the issues that have been raised on both


sides, including looking at the paper that the Welsh Government


provided on the particular concerns that Wales has and those are being


taken into account. The premiere of Luxembourg believes, apparently,


that we might yet be persuaded to stay. Are there others like him and


if the emphatic proceedings yesterday as not disabused him, will


she do so in the nicest possible way? I have to say that I think we


can be reassured that the votes that took place in this House and in of


Lords last night and the passing of the European Union withdrawal


notification bill into Royal assent will give a very clear message to


everybody in Europe that we mean business. The practice and


experience in complex negotiations, for example that in Northern


Ireland, is that nothing is agreed until everything is agreed. Does the


Prime Minister agree that that will be the case here and, if so, given


that she said that no deal is preferable to a bad deal, what hope


can British citizens living in EU countries or European Union citizens


living in the UK believe that there is actually going to be any


resolution of this uncertainty? The honourable gentleman quotes past


experience as the model for what is going to happen in relation to our


negotiations. I don't look at these matters in that way. When we invoke,


we will start those negotiations. We've already been discussing with


other EU leaders the importance of giving reassurance to UK citizens


living in the 27 member states and EU citizens living here about their


status and their future. As I said in answer to a number of questions,


including to his honourable friend the member from Vauxhall, this is an


issue on which I believe there is genuine goodwill on both sides and


that's why I want to see it as part of the early part of the


negotiations. The prime minister has rightly talked about the need to


reassure EU nationals in this country. Does she agree that the


biggest reassurance we can give them is that their rights remain


completely unaltered until this House chooses to change those


rights? My honourable friend has made a very important point and, of


course, until we exit the EU, we are still members of the EU but it is


very clear that any changes that need to take place in terms of our


immigration rules will have to come before this House. The Prime


Minister has said several times today that she is in discussions


with the Scottish government and has confirmed that she wants to trigger


Article 50 by the end of the month so, by my calculations, that means


she has less than two weeks to finish those discussions and to


agree and announced the UK wide approach she promised in July last


year. So when does she expect to finish discussions with the Scottish


government and announce the outcome of those discussions, as she


promised last year? When we trigger Article 50 and go into negotiations,


as she knows, we will be negotiating as the UK government and we have


been in the discussions with the Scottish government and other


devolved up ministrations and the discussions continue but I have


already set out the broad objectives of our negotiations, which does


include the reference to the very sort of trade deal that she and her


colleagues have said they want to see for the UK and Scotland. There


was laughter from the benches opposite on my right honourable


friend spoke of the single market and digital. Would should remind the


House that we wish to continue to trade with that single market, that


we inject 60 billion into that market and when it comes to digital,


the investments of Snap, Facebook and Softbank, this country is a


powerhouse in digital? He is absolutely right about the role this


country plays in the market for digital services. It is important


and is why we have seen our digital strategy being set out by my right


honourable friend, the Culture Secretary. And it is important for


us. He is absolutely right into the derision from the opposite benches


at the suggestion that we should encourage a single market in digital


services in the EE you, which we can then trade with and sell into... I'm


afraid I was rather surprised at that reaction because it seems that


the opposite benches don't want to see us developing that market in a


way that is good for the UK. The Prime Minister said, and repeated a


moment ago without a hint of irony or comedy, that she is encouraging


the European Union to a single market in services because it is in


our national interest it would she explain to the House and the country


how it is not in our national interest to be a part of it? I know


the honourable gentleman has said in the past that he has a different


view about the result of the vote that took place and where we should


be going as a government in relation to membership of the EU. I know he


was asking about the single market and I've answered many questions


about the single market and my response to him is the same as my


response to my honourable friend, which is, of course it is important


for us to encourage that a market that we are going to be working


with, trading with, that we want to see the best possible access with


and ability to operate within four hours services, that we make sure


that is a free market that we are able to work with. Can I thank my


right honourable friend for her statement. As we do not pay to sell


our goods and services to any other country around the world, can my


right honourable friend confirm that we will not accept any deal which


requires us to pay the European Union for access to the single


market? I say to my honourable friend that


obviously, he may have been looking at the same report that he


honourable friend the member for North East Somerset has been doing


in relation to the sums of money but as I say, the vote that was taken on


the 23rd of June last year was about many things, in terms of leading the


European Union one of the things that we were clear about is that we


were not going to every year continue to pay huge sums of money


into the EU. Is it the Prime Minister 's intention that both the


Common travel area and the Good Friday agreement would be


specifically named as features in the framework for future


relationships between the UK and the EU and she agree about the


importance of having the terms specifically reflected in a new UK-


EU treaty to make it clear that the Northern Ireland is part of the UK


that could elect to rejoin the EU without the sets are Article 49


negotiations and the doctrine would not be an impediment. We have been


very clear about the important of maintaining the agreements that have


been made in relation to Northern Ireland. That is an issue that is


very clear to other European states, as well. On the Common travel area.


It existed long before either before the Republic or the United Kingdom


were part of the European Union and one of the objectives that I set out


as we looks to negotiations, is that we will be looking to maintain that


Common travel area. Following the last few months of debate, I am


assured, that they are striving for a zero tariff trade deal as the


enter formal the ghost stations. With my honourable friends, look at


the impact, following the partial European Union on trade deals.


Honourable friend raises an important point, all too often


people look as if we are just the supplicant and anything that is


decided is only going to have an impact on the United Kingdom. Of


course the nature of the trade you will have an impact on companies


within the remaining 27 member states as they want to trade with


and operate in United Kingdom, that is why I am confident that when we


come to negotiations people see the benefit to both sides about getting


a deal that is a good trade deal. The Prime Minister has said that in


the deal she wanted with the European Union, she wanted associate


membership of the customs union, membership that does not as yet


exist. On the sixth of debris, I asked the Prime Minister whether she


had raised that with The European Council parts and she overlooked


that. Can I ask again, as she raised the idea and what was the response


or should we take it as meaning no deal. First of all, to the


honourable lady, she's slightly misinterpreting the speech that I


gave in Lancaster house where I set out there were certain elements of


the customs union that we would not wish to be part of because those


would prevent us from negotiating trade deals on our reign as the


United Kingdom with other countries around the world and I said that the


relationship that we wanted to have in terms of the customs union was to


have a seamless and frictionless border as possible and indicated


that might be something that might be called associate membership. We


need to do that as part of the negotiations. Our relationships the


customs union in the European Union will be part of the negotiations


which will start when we trigger Article 50. I very much welcome the


statement by the Prime Minister, paragraph nine of the conclusions on


security refers to EU working together to fight terrorism. One of


the biggest challenges facing Europe and the UK and the next five to ten


years according to experts is returning terrorist fighters from


Syria and Iraq as Daesh is defeated back to the host countries. Was this


disgust at the European level and is there an agreed strategy across the


country to deal with this. I will say this is not one of the issues


that was discussed within the that was discussed within the


business of The European Council which took place last week and


however it is an issue that we have discussed, with other member states


on a number of occasions in the past, and we are all very well


appraised of the need to make sure that we do have identifying those


who are returning and working in a way and dealing with those


individuals returning in a way that is most appropriate and of course as


far as the icy kingdom is concerned it will be looked at on a day to day


basis. On single market membership, in the 2017 manifesto they made an


unconditional commitment, to safeguard British interests in the


single market. She castigates my honourable friends Horwill south and


Pontypridd, for raising this issue but she herself said on the 26th of


May last year to an audience of Goldman Sachs bankers in relation to


single market membership, "Economic arguments are clear, I think part of


being in the 500 trading block that is significant -- 500 million." So


why is she waving the white flag and started these negotiations that even


trying to keep us as a member of the single market with the reforms that


she seeks, the other second-biggest economy in Europe, the fifth biggest


military power in a while and she's waving the white flag. I'm doing


nothing of the swords and the honourable gentleman, needs to


recognise that there is a difference between access to the single market,


protecting our ability to operate within the single market and


membership of the single market. Membership of the single market


means accepting free movement comic means accepting the jurisdiction of


the European Court of Justice and it means effectively remaining a member


of the opinion. We have voted to leave and that is what we be doing.


My right honourable friend needs no lessons in her fry and read duty


which is to the defence of this great realm, and I welcome the


effort she has made in working together to counter the Russia


threat which is growing sadly. Could she please talk about how this


threat would affect the United Kingdom should parts of R.N. Great


United Kingdom succeed to the European Union and what farmer


abilities that were put to our defence. My honourable friend is


right to say that we are looking very carefully at the impact that


Russia and others can have a crush the European Union in their


activities but it is also right I believe that we are stronger as a


United Kingdom in our collective defence, and that for any part of


the United Kingdom, every part of the nutty kingdom benefits from


being part of the UK in terms of our collective defence in terms of


security and crime and terrorism. The


membership of the customs union gives us tariff free access to every


single market in the world and through the customs union, all trade


deal that any other leading economy outside of those institutions. Why


is she therefore determined to put this outcome is it because she


genuinely believes it is the right thing to do which she didn't a


matter of months ago or is it because she's taken hostage by the


right of her party. Another Conservative Prime Minister putting


the Parthiv Patel interests -- the Parthiv Patel interests ahead of the


interests of the country. On the 23rd of June 2016, the majority of


the people in the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union.


There are consequences of leaving the European Union. We want to


negotiate, a comprehensive free-trade agreement which gives us


the best possible access to the single market. The the honourable


member shouts that we have the best possible mems should bother single


market and we have that because we are member of the European Union,


that involves. The question has been asked, the Prime Minister shouldn't


have too fight to be heard, the right Honourable Lady must be heard.


That involves accepting certain of the requirements from the European


Union, requirements that people voted not to be part of when they


voted on the 23rd of June. But this is why I have consistently said,


members of this house must stop thinking that there is only an


option in the single market terms, which is about membership or


nothing. There isn't, there is an option which is about a con Brexit


free-trade agreement that gives us the sort of access that we want to


have -- comprehensive free-trade agreement. Can I commend the Prime


Minister for the strongly the ship, Latvia is hosting the Nato supreme


Allied Commander Europe meetings tomorrow, I represent a considerable


Ukrainian community. In Huddersfield. It is clear there are


real and present threats across from Russia, will the Prime Minister


continued to put Nato at the forefront of tackling these worries


and concerns from Russian aggression. I can absolutely assure


my honourable friends that we will continue to put Nato at the


forefront of that, and I'm pleased that UK is able to make a very


specific contribution to Nato and its efforts in relation to the


eastern border and we will soon be seeing UK troops going to Estonia


for example as a very visible sign of the commitment. Fears over the


consequences of Brexit have undoubtedly been exploited by Sinn


Fein and the recent Northern Ireland election, Sinn Fein increased its


first preference vote by somewhere in the region of 58,000 first


preference votes. That means that Sinn Fein is just one seat behind


the DUP in the new assembly as elected. I wonder and I'm sure that


the country wonders, and particularly those in Northern


Ireland, what steps the Prime Minister is going to take including


visiting Northern Ireland, what additional steps is the Prime


Minister going to take to turn back the tide of support for Sinn Fein.


Obviously, the honourable lady is correct in what she sets out as the


facts in relation to the voting matter place in the election. I


think the focus that we must all have in the coming couple of weeks


because there is limited time set aside in the legislation for doing


this, is on bringing the parties together to form a devolved


administration. I believe it is absolutely essential that we do


everything that we can to ensure that a devolved administration is


maintained in Northern Ireland. On the issue in relation to the impact


of Brexit, we have been very clear about the relationship that we want


to ensure in relation to the border with the Republic of Ireland and we


continue to work with the Republic of Ireland and others on delivering


on that. I think the focus of us all over the next couple of weeks as the


bringing the parties together to see it but administration being formed


in Northern Ireland. As Home Secretary and Prime Minister my rock


honourable friend has paid particular attention to the scourge


of modern slavery, can she confirmed that as she negotiates out of the


European Union, she will prioritise a collaborative approach to continue


to tackle this will trade and she would take the same approach when it


comes to designing a scheme for seasonal workers who may still have


to come to work in this country? It is certainly the case that we will


continue to prioritise the work that we do in relation to modern slavery


and to supporting the victims of this file trade but also breaking


the criminals were making so much money out of this terrible trade and


out of the damage, and abuse, that they bring to individuals. As he


says, this is something that he has looked at particularly in areas of


the agricultural sector in his own part of the country. As we do that


we want to continue that cooperation on that matter. As we leave the


European Union we will the continuing to cooperate on these


issues. They are not just about them ship of the European Union but about


whatever international organisations we are part of. The Prime Minister


talks about listening to the Scottish Government, that is on the


back of the people of Scotland voting overwhelmingly to remain


within the European Union. It is little surprise given the tragedy of


the UK Government, that the Scottish National party asked if romance of


the Scottish referendum, will she attempt to put a veto on the


democratic wishes of the Scottish people and the Scottish Parliament.


There was a referendum in septum 2014 in which the people of Scotland


decided to remain part of the United Kingdom. And his right honourable


friend the member for Gordon at the time said it was a once in a


generation vote. The honourable member for Murray quite rightly


started his questions by emphasising the importance of jobs in the


economy. In circumstances where Scottish trade with the UK's ?50


billion and is four times less in the EU, is there, does the Prime


Minister think there is a good economic case for Scotland to remain


in the UK, and ensure that together we work for the besties in Europe?


-- the best deal. My honourable friend is absolutely right, the


figures are very clear, the single market that's most important to


Scotland is the single market in the United Kingdom. The right Honourable


member for Gordon shouts the word frictionless and borders from his


sedentary position. Of course Scotland has a frictionless border


with the rest of the United Kingdom and it is also the most important


single market it is a member. Thank you Mr Speaker, in recent


discussions it is clear there is no support in any of the parties


represented in the German parliament for the UK to return Harry


The Prime Minister has asserted her optimism but the she recognised that


is the starting point we are at? The reality of the starting point is


that we are going to be sitting down with the European commission,


representatives of the European Council and the European Parliament


to negotiate the relationship that is going to be right for the UK and


the rest of the EU and the discussions I've had so far indicate


that there is a recognition of the importance of making sure that that


is a very good free trade agreement on both sides of the negotiation. I


commend the Prime Minister for her statement. Would she agree with me


that now is a very significant time when we can consider raising


environmental and animal welfare standards as we leave the EU? For


example, the export of live animals, which currently we cannot stop? The


position we have taken is that at the point at which we leave the EU,


the key will be brought into UK law, through the great repeal bill, so


that at the point at which we believe everybody will know where


they stand in relation to the various rules and regulations that


we have abided by as members of the EU but thereafter, it will be open


to this Parliament to determine what the standards are that rewrote Crier


-- that we require. The prime minister will know that under the


Dublin rules, Great Britain has returned more asylum seekers than we


have received from other countries. What are her intentions post Brexit?


Does she intend us to continue to participate in that? We will be


looking at the relationship we will have with the EU on matters such as


the asylum seekers issue. I have broadened the discussion on this


issue. It is not just about the UK's relationship with the EU but how the


whole international community deals with asylum seekers and economic


migrants and I'm very clear that as an international community we should


accept that people should claim asylum in the first safe country


that they reach. Two Dorset members! Can I congratulate my right


honourable friend for her clarity and her purpose and does she agree


with me that there is no greater importance today as the United


Kingdom to stand together, and for those calling for a second


referendum, they are behaving totally irresponsibly and leading


the people of Scotland potentially over a cliff like lemmings to


economic ruin? He is right that as we start on the negotiations for the


future relationship with the EU, I believe it is important for us to do


that as a United Kingdom, to come together, recognising the interests


of all parts of the UK and ensuring that we get absolutely the right


deal for the whole of the UK. The European Council last week agreed to


speed up proposals for European travel authorisation and sharing of


information on travel. Given Brexit, are we planning to be in that system


and, if not, what does it mean for these fees or access Europe for


British citizens? -- these Negotiations are ongoing. Is a


member of the EU, we had the ability not to be part of that arrangement


but as we look forward to the arrangements post Brexit, one of the


issues we will be discussing within the negotiations is how we exchange


information in relation to Borders. The right honourable gentleman will


know from his experience in his previous positions, it is not just a


question of issues like that but access to things like you wrote DAX.


The third of the Dorset trio this afternoon! Like my right honourable


friend, I am a unionist to my fingertips. Could I invite my right


honourable friend to discuss with her Cabinet colleagues that as we


see a dwindling of EU financial contributions to capital programmes


in this country, we explore very vigorously the opportunity to


present all of our constituents where capital projects are


undertaken in all parts of the kingdom that they are funded,


supported and delivered by UK taxpayers from a UK Treasury? He


raises an interesting point and obviously, as he is aware, the


Treasury have been able to give, in relation to funds that are currently


received from the EU, the Treasury have been able to give reassurances


to people about those funds moving forward for the period while we are


still members of the EU and, in some cases, thereafter as well. Leaving


the EU does give us an opportunity to look at how support can best be


provided, as my honourable friend says, by the United Kingdom


government. In December last year, just 101 EU nurses came over to work


in our NHS, a decrease of over 90% from the pre-referendum months. How


does the Prime Minister intends to tackle this so that we don't have


any more hospital wards like many in my constituency, which are


dangerously understaffed? I recognise the contribution nurses


from the EU have made to the NHS over the years and, of course, that


is one group of EU citizens we will be thinking of when we start those


negotiations in relation to the EU citizens that are living here and


their rights but what the Government has also recognises that there are


many people here in the UK who wish to train as nurses who have not been


able to do previously because of the cap on the numbers and we have


removed that cap and are enabling more to be able to do that. Nobody


knows what the answer will be when the people of Scotland are asked a


simple question, do they want to choose hard Brexit as part of the UK


or do they want to seek full partnership with 27 sovereign states


in the European Union? Will Prime Minister agree that that question


should be asked at a time when whatever the Democratic answer from


people is, it can be seen to be implemented and that means that


question should be asked in the time frame indicated by Nicola Sturgeon


yesterday? He will know because he has been present in this chamber on


previous statements and debates I've made, I don't agree or accept the


terminology he has used that what we are negotiating will be a hard


Brexit from the EU. We will be negotiating a good trade deal which


will be good for all parts of the EU, including the people of


Scotland. In her desperation to do Ukip's bidding, the Prime Minister


has determined that we will be leaving the single market as well as


withdrawing from the European Union. Can she tell me whether there will


be stand-alone legislation to repeal the European Economic Area act of


1993, or does she intends to use the EEA as the basis for her


transitional implementation period? Can I say to the honourable lady


that I would have expected better of her than the sort of description


that she has given and I will say simply this - what this government


is doing is the bidding of the British people and the British


people alone. Turkey is an exceptionally important partner in


Europe's attempts to deal with mass migration. Turkey is also an


exceptionally important partner in Nato. Given the events of the last


week, did the European Council have any discussions on how we can ensure


that democracy does not row back in Turkey but at the same time Turkey


remains the important partner it has been so far? The council recognises


the contribution made in the EE- Turkey deal made some time ago which


has led to a significant reduction in the number of people moving from


Turkey across the Aegean Sea into Greece. I'm very clear, as others


have been, that we want to see Turkey maintaining its democratic


institutions, rule of law and respecting international human


rights. There has been a lot of emphasis on the trade deal but the


divorce deal is very important, too, and at the heart of any divorce deal


is a fair financial settlement. What will the prime minister do if there


is no fair financial settlement at the end of the Article 50 period?


What will happen men to the divorce bill and our exit from the EU? Why


walk she will be aware that as we exit the EU, there are a number of


issues we will be looking at and discussing with the EU. But I didn't


raise this or respond to this point earlier but a number of people have


used this term of divorce. I prefer not to use the term of divorce from


the European Union because very often when people get divorced, they


don't have a very good relationship afterwards and this is about...


Honourable members need to stop looking at this as simply coming out


of the European Union and see the opportunity for building a new


relationship with the European Union, and that is what we will be


doing. Thank you, Mr Speaker. In the jumble of words that forms the Prime


Minister's statement, she missed two keywords, hypocrisy and irony


regarding her actions today. But the real question I want to ask is,


post-Brexit, what is the Prime Minister's plans with regards to the


London fisheries convention? The London fisheries convention is one


of the issues that the government is looking up currently and will be


looking at in relation to the future relationship as we come out of the


European Union and their four out of the common fisheries policy. A very


important matter and I believe we are going to learn more about it.


The honourable gentleman obviously knows all about it. When the first


minister announced her drive for a second device of Scottish


independence referendum yesterday, one of her manufactured grievances


was the fact that Brexit gives the UK government an opportunity to


muscle in on the powers of the Scottish Parliament. Would the Prime


Minister agree with me that the fundamental overriding principle of


any EU repatriate powers should be that they are transferred to the


defaulter demonstrations? I've been very clear with all the defaulter


ministrations that Brexit will not involve any powers that have


currently been devolved to those of ministrations being returned to the


UK government and indeed, as we look of the transfer of powers that are


currently in Brussels back to the UK, they may very well see more


powers being devolved to the administrations. Thank you, Mr


Speaker. 43% of publications from the UK's 47 biggest universities


come from collaboration with at least one EU firm, even higher in


London institutions. So did the discussion is the prime minister


engaged in with their European counterparts touch on any kind of


safeguards for our university sector, given this level of


dependency on European industry? And also, how is her manifesto


commitment, page 75, to not only remain in the single market but to


expand it... How is that one going? She might have noticed we also


promised the British people a referendum and a vote on whether to


stay in the EU, we gave them that vote, they decided, we are now


acting on the results of that vote. Although the vast majority of


questions this afternoon have been about the issue of Brexit, the issue


of Brexit was not an issue that was discussed formally in the EU


council, as I indicated earlier. But in response of the issue and


universities, we have given some comfort to universities in relation


to research funding equivalent that they enter into before we leave the


EU but if she looks at the Lancaster house speech that I gave in the


White Paper, she will see science and innovation is one of the issues


we have put as one of the areas which will be a negotiating object


of. Many thanks, Mr Speaker. The Prime Minister has welcomed the


completion of the free trade agreements between the EU and Canada


and the pending free trade agreement between the EU and Japan. Isn't it


the case that when it comes to benefits of the single market and


free trade, the EU will be getting the full jammy doughnut, whilst the


UK will be left behind with nothing but an empty hole?


No, we will be negotiating free trade agreements, not just with the


EU but with other countries around the world. And, crucially, other


countries around the world are eager to work with us to negotiate


free-trade agreements. Discussions with countries like America,


Australia, Mexico, India, we are already looking at agreements we can


have as a United Kingdom outside the European Union. Does the Prime


Minister accept that her intransigence over amendments to the


EU withdrawal bill, her pandering to the Brexit fanatics on her


backbenchers, have diminished the role and sovereignty of this


Parliament over the Brexit process, and has opened up the door and


threatened the future integrity of the UK? Amendments were put before


this house, this house voted and took a decision. I find the sort of


description that the honourable gentleman has given, if he is saying


every time this house takes a decision he does not agree with,


somehow it is disrespectful parliament, I have to tell him that


is not how this place works. We put our arguments, we vote on them, one


side wins and the other losers. Does the Prime Minister accept if we


crash out of the European Union with a bad deal or no deal at all, that


would entirely beady failing and responsibility of our chief


negotiator and her team, namely the Prime Minister and her ministers? I


have already said I am optimistic we will be able to negotiate a good


deal for the United Kingdom. Well, I agree with the Prime Minister on one


thing, Mr Speaker, that politics is not a game. Which is why I will not


sit back and just hope for the best from her Government as she seems to


wish me to do. Given the way she has handled the compromise is put


forward from the Scottish Government, and the situation she


now finds herself in, can I offer her a moment of reflection? Is there


anything she regrets in the way that she has responded to those


compromises, or does dogma still raining Downing Street? We have had


extensive discussions with the Scottish Government and the other


devolved administrations on the issues that they have raised with


the United Kingdom government, and issues that they wish us to take


into concern. As I said earlier, and I said yesterday, there are many


areas of common ground between us and the Scottish Government. We both


agree on the protection of workers' rights, once we have left the


European Union. We have been looking at those areas of common ground. We


have also been looking, as we will do in negotiations, at ensuring we


get a deal, an arrangement, a relationship for the future that is


good for the whole of the United Kingdom, including Scotland. First


of all, Prime Minister, can I thank you for your statement and refer you


to the Somalian conference new referred to. At the meeting of the


IPG for Nigeria, a Nigerian MP was a guest speaker. He informed us that


Nigeria have become a centre for illegal arms smuggling for the whole


of Africa, the biggest that there was. Can I seek an assurance from


the Prime Minister that she will raise this issue at the conference


for all of Africa, because it is very important, when it is hosted in


the UK in May 2017? I can assure the honourable gentleman that the issues


he has raised is one that we will look at very seriously as a


government. There are a number of concerns in respect of what he has


said. I will certainly look at that issue very carefully. I am extremely


grateful to the Prime Minister and to all 66 backbench members,


following the Leader of the Opposition, who questioned her.


Point of order, Maria Miller? The European Court of Justice has


announced today any employer can ban religious symbols at work, including


the wearing of headscarves. This overturns important existing case


law from the European Court of Human Rights. Mr Speaker, what mechanisms


are open to this house to obtain a swift clarification of what this


means here in the UK, particularly so soon after the Prime Minister 's


statement in this house that what a woman wears is her choice, and


nobody else's? I am grateful to the honourable lady for the point of


order, raised not only in her capacity, doubtless, as a


constituency member of Parliament, but on the strength of her interest


in the equalities committee. I have not been aware of that development


until the right honourable lady notified me, not least because I had


been in the chair, tending to my duties. I can imagine the issue will


be of considerable interest and concern to a great many people, with


a variety of different views, in all parts of the country. The short


answer to the right honourable lady is that it is open to her to table a


question on the matter. I have received no occasion of an intention


by a government minister to come to the house and make an oral


statement, but she has the recourse of a question. If, as seems


possible, she judges the matter to be urgent, she knows the mechanism


that is available to her. To bring the matter of the attention of the


house, to secure a ministerial response, sooner, rather than later.


If there are no further points of order, we come now to the ten minute


rule motion. Mr Speaker, I beg to move that leave


be given to bring in a bill to require our overseas embassies and


consulates to serve wines and sparkling wines produced in the


United Kingdom at official functions. Article 50 is on its way


and this could be seen as the first post Brexit bill. As we leave the


EU, we must grasp every opportunity to find new markets for products


around the world and to be imaginative in supporting and


promoting them. British culture is an industry that has a golden future


ahead of it, much like the colour of its best-known sparkling vintages.


It will play an increasing important role in rural economic powerhouse.


For those that think our weather cannot support wines to compete with


France, Italy and Spain, think again. Chalky soil, with south


facing slopes and warmer temperatures provide ideal


conditions for producing wine and sparkling wine. Last year, with just


5 million bottles of English wine. Even Scotland, Wales and Northern


Ireland produces wine to be bottled to everybody's taste and budget.


Admittedly, it is a fraction of the global total, but that means we have


a market share in our sights. In fact, speaking of France, we have


been beating them at their own game. Last year, a tasting was held in


Paris and English wine was not only mistaken for champagne, but it beat


respected champagne houses all around. This wasn't just a one-off.


English wine won more than 175 UK and international awards in 2016


alone. One of the great characteristics of modern Britain is


that someone who was not exactly brought up with a champagne flute in


their hand, unlike several honourable members I could


mention... Don't look at me! Has the opportunity to represent and promote


such a fantastic, blossoming, British industry. My constituency of


Wilden, East Sussex, has not one or two vineyards, but well over a


dozen. Several of them boast international awards. Madam Deputy


Speaker, I have to report that my husband is doing his single-handed


best to support this local industry, judging by the contents of our


fridge. It is a hugely exciting time to be part of the English wine


industry. There are now 133 wineries and over 500 vineyards dotted across


our beautiful English countryside. 150 of these are open to the public,


including one of our own local vineyards, which is set in an area


of outstanding beauty and with far reaching views to the South Downs in


the distance. Sussex Fox And Fox Vineyards, sit either side of the


hilltop village of Mayfield. Among rolling hills and woodlands, you


would be forgiven for seeing a photo of harvest time and thinking it was


taken in champagne. Set amid bluebell woods at the edge of


Ashdown forest are Bluebell Vineyard Estates. Like many vineyards, it


specialises in producing award-winning, estate grown, English


sparkling wines, using traditional methods. The same method used to


create champagne. Last year, it picked up an impressive haul of 16


medals at International wine competitions. Similarly, Davenport,


which has vines in my constituency, has won a whopping 35 awards since


its establishment. Most impressively, both winemakers


received silver medals at the prestigious International Wine And


Spirit Competition last year, something which would have been


unheard of last year. Last month, I celebrated the English wine


industry's success in Parliament, with top wine critic Matthew Gilks,


hosting a tasting and taking opportunity to boast about the


stunning quality. It is no wonder that for the first time last year it


is wineries became official suppliers to Number 10. Chapeltown


and Ridgeview are now official suppliers for Downing Street


receptions and I believe Her Majesty the Queen serves English sparkling


wine at State banquets, showing commitment and confidence in the


wine industry. UK produced wine currently accounts for around 1% of


the wine purchased in the UK. But it has high aspirations and great


potential. It is no longer just a few people growing vines in their


back garden. Bluebell vineyard has more than doubled in size since


opening in 2005, and now has 70 acres and 100,000 vines. On my


doorstep, my honourable friend for Lewis has an estate established in


2010, and it has the potential to produce over 1 million bottles of


Sussex sparkling wine annually within eight decade. It could


develop into one of the largest single vineyards in England and even


the largest in Europe. Back home, there is a real appetite to invest


in British soil and the industry has seen significant overseas investment


in recent years. Champagne houses have already invested into growing


English grapes and this type of venture shows no sign of stopping.


In 2015, sales of English sparkling hit ?100 million. Overseas markets


grew by one third. There is a huge appetite from the industry to


continue this trend. Indeed, winemakers have pledged to produce


10 million bottles by 2020, with 25% of those for export. That is why, in


a post-Brexit world, we must do all we can to get behind industries that


show the sort of potential of our wine industry. What better way to do


that then to give the world a taste by serving UK produced wine and


sparkling wine in our 268 embassies, high commissions and consulates


around the world? What could be more appropriate as a setting to promote


English wine than the famed Ambassador's reception? However, the


lack of consistency in embassy policies for hosting and saving


British products means that we are missing opportunities to show it off


in new markets that should be fertile territory for exports such


as China, Japan, Singapore and even India, where wine consumption


amongst the professional classes is growing exponentially. Last week, I


was told that our Rome embassy asked the UK wine industry to sponsor a


wine tasting for Tuscan wines. This just isn't good enough. I doubt


Italy's outposts in London said anything other than Italian wine.


This bill will enable a consistent, top-down policy from the Foreign


Commonwealth Office to require embassies, where possible, to serve


British wines and thus promote British exports. Our embassies, high


commissions and UK missions abroad are an extension and projection of


our country's brand, showing support for a high quality and high


indigenous product, such as our award-winning British wines, which


will demonstrate a confident in our country and a belief in the


opportunities ahead of us. -- a confidence. Madam Deputy Speaker,


Chapeltown in Kent has just signed a deal, a distribution deal, in


France, of all places. I look forward to the very best of our wine


is creating a splash in Paris, and Berlin, and Madrid, and room for


that matter and, perhaps, perhaps helping to oil the wheels of the


Brexit negotiations to come. Madam Deputy Speaker, I commend this build


the house. -- this Bill to the house. The question is that the


Honourable Member have leave to bring in the Bill. The question is


that the Honourable Member have leave to bring in the bill. As many


of that opinion, say aye. I think the ayes have it. Who will bring in


the Bill? Said Peter Bottomley, Nigel Evans, James Duddridge, Andrew


Trevelyan, Julian Brazier, Chris Bryant, James Heappey, James


Cartlidge and myself. Thank you very much. The United


Kingdom Wines And Sparkling Wines Bill. Second reading, what day?


Friday, the 24th of March. The Klerk will now proceed to read the orders


of the day. The question is as on the order


paper. Thank you. This government is about delivering opportunity. The


opportunities that matter to ordinary working people up and down


this country, the opportunity to work in a skilled, well paying


career. The opportunity to send your children to a good school. The


opportunity to contribute to a fair, better society where everyone can do


their best for their community. These ambitions are not too much for


us to ask. They are not unreasonable. But the truth is far


too long too many people in our country have felt cut off from


opportunity. They see doors open for others but staying closed for them.


We will work with the grain of human nature to spread opportunities to


every town, city and region in our country, to give everyone the chance


to contribute. A strong economy is a vital part of this mission. It


provides the careers and the jobs which equip people and fill them


with a sense of self-worth. The knowledge that we all have a role in


the society, and a strong economy is at the heart of how people could


contribute to our country as a whole. This government is in the


business of building careers and jobs. Over 2 million jobs since


2010. There are more people working than ever before. The employment


rate for women is at the highest level since records began with 70%


of 60-64 -year-olds -- 16-64 -year-olds now in work. Does she


agree with me that one of the most important things the government can


do is support women returning to work? Absolutely right. She will


hopefully welcome the element of the project that invested in


internships. I will come onto that later in my speech. Take it from me,


I believe wealth creation is so important to give us the resources


for wealth creation. So many people have cut back. We are the 64th worst


hit out of 650. We don't feel the affluence she talks about. We have


record investment coming into our schools and if I can continue, to


secure and build a strong economy we do need sustained investment in the


human capital. The skills, the knowledge and the technical


excellence that drives productivity and growth, it is people that will


lift our country and we are investing in people. We need to do


this now more than ever because we know there is a productivity gap


between the UK and other advanced economies and we know that part of


this is caused by skills shortages. I am grateful for giving way. Is it


a mistake to cut this? It will affect them and deny the


opportunities. As I already said, the strong economy that has helped


to be created I was talking about how that is important. We know that


top employers and businesses are telling us the skills they need in


science, technology, engineering and maths are in two short supply. As my


right honourable friend says, is she aware that 5% of women returning to


work would generate an extra ?750 million? Absolutely, and that is why


it is one of the most powerful leaders we have two helped Drive


growth in the economy and more broadly around the world over the


coming years ahead. When we look at how we are going to plug the skills


gap, only 10% of adults in our country for the technical


qualification. Germany currently produces twice as many science


engineering and technology technicians and we know this. We


cannot afford to wait. Other economies have been ahead of us and


this government is clear that we will not fall further behind. We


should recognise globalisation and automation are changing workplace.


35% of our jobs are at risk of being replaced, not through competition


but by technology. She mentions Germany's lead in training in


technical positions. Does she link that with the fact that Germany


consistently has a much higher level of corporation tax in order to fund


that? I think Germany has its own approach in relation to corporation


tax. Ours has been to dramatically reduce it to make sure companies can


retain the profits to reinvest in growing their companies. I think


there is a substantial job creation in comparison to so many other


countries. It is why we have the ability to put it into our public


services. As we prepare to leave the European Union we will need to be


more self-sufficient in our workforces to set ourselves up for


success. We will need new ideas and new jobs and meet every challenge. A


global Britain is what we want, strong at home and strong abroad. It


is time for Britain to step up a gear. To begin the shift up to the


high skill, high productivity economy. This government is ready to


act. Is it not a fact that under this government we've fallen two


places in the research and development league tables. The


Autumn Statement provides further statements, but what I am talking


about is not just physical infrastructure, it is how the


country will be successful, investing in our people and human


capital. That is what we will be doing through this budget. Investing


in skills, education and training. Creating a strong economy that works


for everyone. This government is rightly focused on apprenticeships


because of the huge difference they can make to individuals. They will


boost lifetime earnings by 11% on average. If you 3% of apprentices


tell us they believe it is improving their prospects and this is already


making a big difference to individuals. Last year, 900,000


people were enrolled in an apprenticeship and that means more


than 3 million people have started an apprenticeship since 2010.


Apprentices like Adam Sharp, who moved 150 miles to take up a


mechanic apprenticeship. He dreams of being that nuclear power plant's


chief engineer. Becky King moved to develop her passion for science.


Last week I kicked off National apprenticeships week in the city and


I met young people who were inspiring because they were finding


out just how well they could do. Apprenticeships are bringing out the


underlying talent of our young people and it's cathartic for them


to be able to discover their potential. Earlier I met with


nationwide representatives from my area keen to get more skills to lead


businesses and apprentices from Lloyds last week. One area where we


really need to keep the momentum is with the maths skills to make sure


women can lead companies as well. The basic skills. Can I just say we


need to impose a time limit of eight minutes right from the beginning. It


is very heavily subscribed. If people are going to intervene they


must keep it very brief. I pay tribute to the work that her local


colleges doing and she's absolutely right if we are going to see a


change in the workplace we have to start early. We need to build that


pipeline to make sure there are girls and women going into those


careers that are traditionally male dominated. It's not just about


making a difference to the people doing apprenticeships.


Apprenticeships are also making a difference to our country. When we


talk to employers they tell us this increases quality and productivity


so for them investing in an apprenticeship pays out for them and


their business and it is paying out for the wider economy. This is only


the beginning of our apprenticeship reform. Next month we are


introducing a levy which will ensure that there will be over ?2.5 billion


available to support apprenticeships and contributing to the levy will


mean that employers are truly invested. It keeps us on track to


meet our manifesto commitment. They will play a key role in delivering


the key skills our economy needs to level up but we need to do more to


meet the challenges our economy faces and the most successful


countries don't just rely on these. There are work -based routes to get


skilled professionals. They also depend on college -based routes,


technical courses. We will up our game, looking at reforming the


system to make it a central plank of how we sustain a growing economy.


For decades our country has neglected technical education


despite the fact a substantial proportion of our young people take


this path. We've never achieved a sustainable strategy and that's


because it's never been truly led by employers. We need a strategy that


asks businesses what this curriculum should look like, investing in the


tools and the teaching and the skills and expertise that helps


young people navigate a complex web of choices and careers, to find the


skills and careers that are right for them. We've allowed them to


emphasise quantity rather than quality. There are 13,000 separate


technical qualifications and to take one example, in plumbing a young


person has a choice of 33 different courses. How do they know which is


the highest quality and which is valued by businesses and the right


fit for them? In recent years we have tightened


the requirements for school and college tables, but we need to go


much further to ensure that technical education is high-quality


and meets needs. In place of complexity, this Government is


following the advice of Lord Sainsbury and replacing the current


system with a streamlined set of just 15 technical skills routes.


Each route will be a path to skilled employment, from construction to


digital, whether it is bricks and mortar or lines of code, and our


standards for each route will be designed and agreed by our best


businesses, to make sure that there is a direct flow through to the


skills that our economy needs. We know that we need investment as well


as reform. At the moment, a young person working towards a technical


qualification receives a programme of around 600 hours a year. In the


countries with the very best technical education, like Germany,


Denmark, the Netherlands and Norway, students will train far more hours


per year. If we really are serious about becoming world-class on


skills, we need to rival the commitment and investment of the


world's leading countries. That is why last Wednesday my right


honourable friend the Chancellor announced over half ?1 billion a


year of new funding for technical education. This will be used to


increase the number of teaching hours for students, as the Sainsbury


panel recommended it will also fund institutions to organise a


substantial, high quality workplace for every technical education


student, helping them apply skills in the workplace and prepare for a


successful move into employment. In total, this will mean that a


student's programme hours will increase by more than 50% from 600


hours per year to more than 900. It is no surprise, Madame Deputy


Speaker, that the CBI called this budget a breakthrough budget for


skills. The funding for extra hours will roll out alongside the


technical routes, beginning with the first programmes in autumn, 2019.


Each of these routes will lead to a new certificate, the T-Level, which


will be a gold standard for technical and professional


excellence. The name will remind members of another prominent


qualification, and that is very deliberate. I want there to be no


ambiguity whatsoever that this is the most ambitious reform of post-16


education since the introduction of A-levels 70 years ago. The


investment announced by my right honourable friend the Chancellor


shows that the Government is committed to making it a success,


building a world-class technical education system will not only


generate a skills and productivity... I will give way. I


am very privileged to have my constituency based on area that is


all about innovation and skills. Will the T-Level be significantly


stronger than existing technical qualifications? Will become on a


number of different fronts. Firstly, it will have commitment and design


led by employers. Secondly it will have more hours, so the student is


having a more comprehensive programme of education to reach the


T-Level. Thirdly, the quality will be much, much higher. More time


spent in the classroom but, critically, more time spent on a


quality work placement with an employer, so once that person


finishes their T-Level, there will come out of it ready to work and


ready to begin their career, with a high-quality qualification that


employers truly value. That is why we feel this is such a significant


step forward. Building this world-class technical education


system is not just going to generate the skills and productivity that are


the foundations of a strong economy. It will also spread opportunity and


increase social mobility, helping to break the link between a person's


background and where they get to in life. Madam Deputy Speaker, it may


be no surprise to the house that most young people from... Many young


people from disadvantaged backgrounds are more likely to be on


technical courses than their peers. And yet it has not been at the level


that they deserve or our economy deserves either. A report by the


Boston consulting group and the Sutton trust suggests greater social


mobility could boost the economy by a staggering ?140 billion every


year. Different young people have different talents. If we can


successfully put technical education on a par with academic roots, it is


not just good for these young people, it is exactly what the


economy needs to. This is not about designing a second chance system for


the disadvantaged. I do not want technical education to be seen as a


back-up to the academic path. I want parity of esteem. I want to


technical education to take its rightful place alongside the


academic track, as they totally credible path to a professional


career. We're not there yet and... Did you call me Lucy Adams? I am


very much a Powell. We on the side of the house welcome any attempt to


raise the esteem and status of technical and vocational education,


something we began in our time in government. Does she agree with me


that in the global world of the future it is often the mix of


technical and academic, whether you look at engineering, the digital


opportunities, creative industries or even health care and social care,


it is the blend. Can she get the house some assurances that people


will not be separated at the age of 16? I think the key to success is


strengthening the technical education routes, as I have talked


about. I think having some longevity to the strategy. The word Lord


Sainsbury did was absolutely critical in giving us an


architecture to build a strategy around. As we have seen in the past,


and around us now. As she says, it's important to make sure that the


whole system which together. That is why it is important as we create


more of the Institute of technology that we also talk with further


education colleges that will be at the centre of all of this. Of


course, also universities, who already do degrees in relation to


areas like engineering. But clearly they have a real offer that they can


make in supporting a more applied learning route and a more technical


education route for many young people. We have to make sure, as she


says, that this does fit together. Indeed, we want to raise the quality


and availability of higher-level technical education so that


technically gifted students can continue those studies beyond the


age of 19. One of the challenges we have had is not only the lower rungs


of the educational ladder not being as high quality as the academic


route, but the higher rungs not being there for people to be able to


climb up and aim for successfully. The new national colleges and the


Institutes Of Technology will make sure there are world-class


institutions for studying higher quality technical qualifications.


From September 2019, we will introduce its maintenance loans so


that study level 4 higher-level qualifications, so that those who


study levels at these suggestions, these are right for them. It means,


just like university students, the best technical minds will not be


limited by financial circumstances or place. It is not just about


parity between places, it is also about parity between people. Nearly


three quarters of young people in Barnsley follow a tactical path. In


Kensington and Chelsea, it is less than one quarter. -- technical path.


By levelling up technical education, putting it on a par with academic


routes, with reform, investment and focus, we can steadily raise the


regional inequalities and make sure that young people -- a -- erase the


inequalities and make sure young people have the door of opportunity


firmly left open for them. Building an opportunity is also about good


school places as well as skills. Good schools are the foundation of


economic success and social mobility. This Government is


resolute in its pursuit of more good school places in every single part


of the country, especially where they are most needed, to be able to


power higher educational attainment. That is why there are almost 1.8


million more children in good or outstanding schools and there were


in 2010. That is 1.8 million young people getting a better start, a


crucially better start, to be able to reach their potential. But there


are still 1 million pupils in schools judged by Ofsted to be


inadequate or schools that require improvement. So there is more work


to do. Alongside half a billion a year in investment in skills, this


delivers ?23 billion of investment to fund over 70,000 places and up to


110 new free school is on top of the 500 free schools we have committed


to deliver by 2020. This includes funding for specialist maths


schools, which build on the successes of the outstanding Exeter


mathematics schools, which I had the privilege to be able to visit


recently, and the King's College London maths schools which the Prime


Minister visited. If every child in every part of the country needs


access to a fantastic school place, we have got to plan ahead and leave


no stone unturned in pursuit of those places. I will give way. My


right honourable friend is making a powerful case for the importance of


education. Does she not share my concern about the current funding


system we have in this country, which is more based on a postcode


lottery than the needs of those schools in those particular


locations? Absolutely. The current approach that we have is not just


outdated, it is also coming places, extremely unfair. And yet we want


our schools to be able to achieve the same outcomes, while funding


them fundamentally different places. Not for any reason other than often


wear that child is growing up. That is something that no one who wants


to see social mobility get better should accept. We have to move to a


more equitable approach on funding. That is what we are consulting on


right now. We have to make sure that the school places are there for


those children as they move through the system. Madame Deputy Speaker,


it is not just about extra school places and the new schools we need,


it is also about investing in schools and school places that we


already have. My right honourable friend the Chancellor has also put


forward an additional ?216 million to help refurbish existing schools


and make them fit for the 21st century. This is on top of the


existing plans to invest over ?10 billion in improving the addition of


the school estate. Does she accept academic A-levels are one way in


which young people can ensure they get a good start in life and perhaps


go on to great success through our university system? What will her


proposals that she is outlining deal for young people in Halewood, who


have no option of doing academic A-levels in the entire borough, and


must leave in order to study? I think she raises an incredibly


profound and important point. Parts of our country were far too long


educational attainment for young people growing up has simply not


been good enough. The situation she highlights as part of a much broader


challenge, I know, in seeking to steadily raise educational


attainment. It is important that, alongside the investment we have set


out for technical education in this budget, that we really do make sure,


through the sort of approaches like opportunity areas, that we zone in


on those areas that most need additional support, to make sure


that we can shift those outcomes. This government's focus on


opportunity does not end when someone leaves full-time education.


In a dynamic, modern economy, we need to foster a culture of lifelong


learning, a culture where all of us, from all walks of life, are


passionate about continuing to upscale themselves. I thank you for


giving way. The Foreign Secretary moves of the issue of school fabric.


The money for school repairs is welcome, but there is a ?6.7 billion


backlog of repairs to bring them up to satisfactory condition. What does


she think the backlog will be by the end of the parliament? Well, the


investment that we have brought forward as part of the budget will


enable us to go further and faster on that backlog that he has pointed


to. It is also important, as I said earlier, that we plan ahead. We need


to make sure that this demographic bulge of young people who have been


in primary and steadily moving through two secondary schools have


school places and classrooms to be able to go through when they need


them. That is why there is a balanced investment that we saw in


the budget, not just in terms of refurbishing existing schools and


existing school places, particularly focused on the ones that are needed


most, but also looking ahead to make sure that we have the extra good


school places that our country will need. Madame Deputy Speaker, I was


briefly touching upon why lifelong learning and the investment to the


budget into lifelong learning is so important, because it needs to very


much become the norm in our country. I want to make sure that people have


the tools and is to be able to do it. The reality is, Madame Deputy


Speaker, is that many of us will never study again once we have left


school. And yet we know, in the economy of the future, re-adapting


skills, continuing to learn, is going to be absolutely vital. That


is why we are making available of ?240 million over the next two years


to fund trials into lifetime learning, to help us make sure that


we know what works, where it is needed and how we can change our


country to have a culture where more adults are seizing opportunities to


upscale and taking control of their lives. Madame Deputy Speaker we have


the highest level, as I said earlier in this debate, of female


employment. It is a fantastic record to have achieved. The gender pay gap


is at a record low of 18.1%. But there is still a gap. This


government is implacable in our commitment to close this gap to zero


within a generation. We know that some women find it hard to return to


work after taking time out to care for young children. Many feel that


they come back to work at a lower level or they have to expect less


progression in work and pay and this is not good enough.


Record only cannot afford to miss out on this talent. Some are running


schemes to help women return to work. We want to work with them to


help them return to work. We want to apply these lessons. When you take


these together with improving the ability of people to do lifelong


learning I want to see people coming back to work who are better skilled


than when they left to take a career break. Not struggling to get their


careers back on track. That's why I announced that we will work with


business groups... The red book shows in terms of Labour market


participation funding for returning is ?5 million as opposed to ?65


million for extending the free schools plan. Does she think that is


appropriate? Return ships are not used widely, by a few companies, but


for those who have invested in them we are at the beginning. We get a


clearer sense of what the broader strategy we should have for the


long-term is but also critically how we can make sure as we develop those


policies and those ideas that they are reformed through evidence. That


was the investment we announced. I will be brief. One of the areas I


wonder if the Secretary of State could also look at is about people


who step out of the workplace for caring responsibilities, not


necessarily youngsters but people who have given up the career for a


shorter time. I think she raises a very important point. We need to


understand flexible working means people adapting. Not just today, it


needs to be able to adapt to changing lives as that happens for


all of us in our working lives and careers. Last week was International


Women's Day and I thought it was a sign of how important this day has


become that the Chancellor marked by making it budget Day! It is


symbolic, Madam Deputy Speaker, and I'm extremely, we have our second


female Prime Minister and I'm proud that both of them have been


conservative Prime Minister is. There's a long way to go but we


should celebrate progress the cause it has been important and so nearly


100 years after women were given the vote, the Chancellor has set aside


?5 million to celebrate that historic event. I will finish by


saying this budget will continue the government's mission to spread


opportunity to every part of the country, and it rests on a strong,


stable economy are avoiding the careers and jobs which lead to


financial independence and success for a new generation and a sense of


meaning in people's lives. We cannot be complacent. There will be more


challenges to come but by investing in a world-class system alongside


schools and lifelong learning and returned ships, this government has


taken a crucial step in underwriting the flow of skills that our country


needs. We will level up opportunity. We will lift our country by lifting


up young people, and this breakthrough budget merits the


support of this house. The question is as on the order paper. It is a


pleasure to respond to the Secretary of State and quite right that we


have a date at this dedication to skills. This comes when Britain has


a social mobility problem getting worse, not better, as a result of an


unfair education system, a two tier Labour market, imbalanced economy


and an unaffordable housing market. Not my accusation but the conclusion


of the social mobility commission. Most of these recommendations have


been ignored. It made a recommendation against the policy.


Sadly, that has also been ignored. Instead, the Chancellor used the


budget to announce plans to spend another ?320 million on the next


tranche of free schools which the Prime Minister wrote would provide


70,000 new places. This would be the equivalent of ?4571 per pupil. But


the Secretary of State will know that her own department's recent


figures will show that the cash price was ?21,000 per place. The


cash cost of a secondary free school place was ?24,000. This is coupled


with a slightly curious detail hidden in the back of the red book


with further 715,000 pounds for free schools in the next Parliament.


Perhaps the Minister can answer this question later, if Philip gives just


been ?320 million for new free places and each school plays costs


?21,000, how many school places will to -- the Prime Minister end up


with? I look forward to marking the homework later. Will she join me and


local parents in Swindon on congratulating the government with


the funding fire-2-mac free schools to help tackle the lack of places


provided? I will come to these points. Either the Prime Minister


has made an announcement without the Chancellor or they have disguised


the overspend on the staggeringly -- inefficient school programme. That


would not be a surprise. The National Audit Office has helpfully


reminded the Chancellor and the Secretary of State, in 2010, the


estimated it would cost ?900 million to open 315 schools. By March 2015


the department had spent double the official budget and not manage to


hit their target. They found they had already spent ?3.4 billion on


the land alone. The Department is now on course to be the largest land


purchase, even before the budget sank more money on. They also showed


that new places were far more expensive than conventional schools


had been. Will the Minister tell this house and the British people


how much money her department will spend to deliver these new free


schools? Will she guarantee that they will open in places where there


is a clear need for places? The Chancellor pledged money for every


school over a three-year period. The Secretary of State made reference to


it. As the member for Southport stated, the National Audit Office


has found that ?6.7 billion is necessary to return all existing


schools to a satisfactory condition. The 85% of schools who apply were


rejected and this investment was cheaper than the free schools


programme. We know why the Chancellor focused on free schools.


It will enable the creation of selective free schools. It was the


former Education Secretary who said he'd had enough of experts but not


even he tried to bring back grammar schools let alone pretend it was a


policy of social mobility. I'm not giving way. We now that only one in


25 pupils at grammar schools is eligible for free school meals while


one in every eight previously attended an independent school. Even


among the highest achieving 20% of pupils from the most affluent


backgrounds, we are more likely to get into a grammar school than those


from the most disadvantaged. Of course, the government have


suggested that they intend to take action to change this. It has not


gone down well on the back benches opposite. Given they've been happy


to jump the gun on the rest of their consultation perhaps the Minister


could be forthcoming to the house about those plans, as she was to the


press. The Chancellor, the Secretary of State has spent a huge amount of


time speaking and I want to carry on. The Chancellor announced the


measure to address this. They are bussing children into grammar


schools. They forgot to mention they've only just cut ?6 million out


of the budget for every other child. That left them with no statutory


provision for disabled people. Others were forced to change school.


They are paying a tax so a handful can be ferried at the cost of


thousands of pounds each. Apparently the comprehensive school buses are


out and the grammar school is in. To give them a figleaf of social


mobility. The Chancellor said they commit because they understand


choice is the key to excellence in education. I would remind the


government that good teaching, school leadership, the right


curriculum and many of the other things are also key to that. But


it's also a rather obvious point that the system they are proposing


is not one in which parents or pupils choose the school. They are


proposing that schools choose the pupils and parents are unlikely to


have a choice on childcare reader. The Chancellor said they will get


the entitlement doubled but the Secretary of State has already


admitted in written answers that only a small minority of those


parents currently receiving 15 hours will be eligible for the 30 hours.


Under 400,000 families will qualify despite the promise that over


600,000 would benefit. The Chancellor's plans for adult


education are no closer to reality. He announced 40 million to trial new


ways of delivering adult education and lifelong learning, yet his own


Government has, since 2010, cut the adult skills budget by 32%, with


over ?1 billion taken out since 2010. Now, I know the Chancellor's


aides have referred to their neighbours in Number 10 as being


economically illiterate, but surely even they can realise the absurdity


of trying to reverse damage caused by ?1 billion of cuts with ?40


million in trials. The new investment would be welcome, after


all, further education budgets were cut by 7% in the last Parliament,


and the Institute for Fiscal Studies found between 2010 and 2020, funding


per pupil in further education would be cut by 13%. Would my friend give


way? Debriefing lines do not quite match the budget lines. The red book


shows that in 2019, the new funding will only be ?6 million. Even by


2021, the new funding will not have risen to the promised half a billion


a year. Is she aware that a consequence of this is that the


productivity gap between this country and the rest of the world


has worsened every single year since the Tories came in, and even under


the coalition, and is now the worst since 1991. Absolutely, I thank my


honourable friend for his intervention. I make that 1-1 from


both sides of the house, I am going to be moving on. That brings us back


to the context of the other announcements, which is the funding


crisis facing our schools. We learn from today's Times that they are now


in retreat over the new funding formula. Perhaps the sexual state


will use this to clarify his position to the house? They might


say they are still consulting and they may not have seen the results,


yet we still haven't seen the results of the School That Work For


Everyone Consultation. That did not stop Prime Minister using the budget


to announce most of the forthcoming school bill to the press. It was


same with the initial plans of the new grammar schools, the new School


improvement funding, and every other education announcement made in last


week's budget. Announcements made behind closed doors are the pay wall


of the Prime Minister's favoured newspapers, rather than within this


house. No wonder they would rather avoid our scrutiny, because there


was one thing the budget fails to mention. That is the pledge that the


party opposite made in their manifesto. Under a future


Conservative Government, the amount of money following your child into


schools will be protected. There will be a real terms increase in the


schools budget in the next Parliament. The last Prime Minister


made clear what he meant. The amount of money following your child into


schools will not be cut. In Treasury speak, flat cash per pupil. So, they


were clear, Mr Deputy Speaker, not a single pupil in the country would


see their funding cut by a single penny. That was their promise. Yet


the National Audit Office has found that there will be an 8% drop in


per-pupil funding this Parliament, leaving schools forced to make cuts


worth ?3 billion. Up and down the country we hear schools that are


seeing less money in their budgets and forced to cut hours or subjects,


or asking parents to chip in. Yesterday, on the European issue,


the government was clear that their justification was a mandate of the


British people. Yet they too had a mandate when it came to funding our


schools. I know that they would like to airbrush the last Prime Minister


from history, but they tell us today, will they tell us today, that


the pledge still stands? When does the Treasury intend to meet it? The


Prime Minister have a lot to say about education, but when it came to


meeting their own promises they were selective with their facts and


copper offensive in their failure. They must do better.


-- comprehensive in their failure. It gives me some pleasure to follow


the shadow Secretary of State for education. Let me start by


congratulating the Secretary of State on his speech. I am delighted


she managed to secure protection for the schools budget, which will


continue to grow in real terms. I congratulate the Chief Secretary,


who I see is in his place, for facilitating that. I would also like


to welcome the national funding formula which the Secretary of State


has been working on with a forensic attention to detail. It will ensure


that funding follows need, rather than an historic accident of


postcode, and in Croydon, the borough I represent, which has been


historically underfunded, we will see the historic injustice


corrected. I would like to congratulate the Secretary of State


for her work and welcome the national funding formula. The Shadow


Secretary of State for Education, in her speech she read out a few


minutes ago, gave us some statistics. The most important


statistic we have when it comes to this country in education, is that


1.8 million more children are being educated in good or outstanding


schools compared to 2010. The honourable lady opposite can quote


all of the sums that she likes, but the fact remains that this


government is delivering, delivering a better education for more children


than ever before and members on this side of the house are proud that our


government are doing that. 1.8 million more children in good and


outstanding schools. That is the result of the free school and


Academy programme and I am delighted that this Government is continuing


and expanding the programme. In that vein, I am also pleased that the


chief secretary, the Chancellor and the Education Secretary have found,


over the next five years, up until 2021-22, and additional ?1 billion


to fund further new schools. New schools give choice to parents. As


this statistics I have quoted show, they encourage higher standards.


Some of the schools may well be new grammar schools, which the


honourable lady opposite criticised. I should declare to the house that I


am a grammar school boy. I went to a grammar school in south London. I


know from my own experience that grammar schools help children from


ordinary backgrounds fulfil their potential. All of the studies show


that children... Children from ordinary backgrounds that go to


grammar schools do a great deal better than those who go to other


schools. I am sorry the honourable lady opposite to not give way, she


did give way to the honourable gentleman for Bassetlaw, many of his


constituents attended grammar school in my constituency. The question she


failed to answer is wide as the abolition of grammar schools has


that been a catastrophic fall in mobility in socially deprived areas?


They can and should be for social mobility. But they include new


measures to make sure grammar schools take on board a higher


proportion of pupils on free school meals. There is a very successful


case study for this. A number of steps, which include outreach for


local primary schools in deprived areas, free tuition for the tests


and bursaries to fund things like school uniform and travel, which


have, together, increased the grammar schools free school meals


intake from 3%, up to 22%, which shows the measures the Education


Secretary is proposing works in practice and I strongly welcome


them. In the interests of joined up thinking, what proportion of


qualifications will the new grammar schools give over to T-Levels? I


think it is up to individual schools to set their own individual


curricula, and also for the parents, children and pupils' choices. That


is what local is a means. Grammar schools, by their nature, tend to be


more academic and flavour. Well, that is what a grammar school is. It


should hardly be a surprise to members opposite. There are other


kinds of school which have a more technical specialisation. Diversity


of provision, choice for parents and variety in our system are signs of


success. Members on this side of the house celebrate that. I would like


to turn to some other measures in the Budget, starting with business


rates. I know a number of members were concerned, including me, about


the effect of the business rates revaluation on smaller businesses,


and a town in my constituency was particularly affected by some quite


significant upward revaluation is. In that context, I think it is very


welcome that the Budget announced ?435 million of discretionary relief


to help small businesses in towns like Pearly. But it might be worth


adjusting that over time. The lion's share comes in the first two years,


180 million in 2017-18. It is very welcome, but the transitional


reliefs, the put caps on small business rate increases, in 17-18,


they are 5%, and 7.5% in 18-19, meaning most small businesses will


not feel too much of an effect in the next two years. It is really


three, four and five-year's time when it will be most powerfully


felt. I wonder if the Home Secretary might consider changing the profile


of that money, so rather than frontloading it, it might be back


loaded into year three and four of the period, when the effects of the


business rate increases will be most heavily felt. The total amount of


money will remain the same, 435 million, but the profile overtime


will be shifted to better match the effects of the business rate


increases. A second thought which I would offer for the future on


transitional relief relates to the upward and downward caps. For the


next financial year, 17-18, bills have been sent out and there is an


upward cap of 5% for small businesses, so no small business get


an increase of more than 5%, there is a downward cap of 4.1%, so no


large business gets a downward decrease of less than 4.1. Lucky to


the future, I wonder if in the Autumn Statement we might consider


fine tuning the upward and downward caps so that the largest businesses,


such as the big four supermarkets, have a lower or even zero further


downward cap, they don't get any further decreases beyond the


decrease next year, and that would fund a more generous upward cap for


the smallest businesses. Rather than getting an upward cap of 10-15% in


2019-21, the money saved might be used to lower the cap. It would be


fiscally neutral, it would not affect the coming financial year,


which is fully set in stone already, but it would help some of those


small businesses in three or four years' time, including businesses in


my constituency. I have noticed the cumulative upward cap for these


small businesses over the five-year period accumulates to 64.2%, quite a


high upward cap. If we could find a way of softening the blow, I think


it would be very welcome indeed. Another area which the Chancellor


touched on in the budget statement related to pollution. He indicated


that, particularly from diesel cars, and as a London MP this affects my


constituency and all London constituencies particularly


profoundly, the Chancellor mentioned there would be a plan delivered over


the summer, responding to the European Union court case, and that


fiscal measures would be introduced in the autumn budget. I must say, I


have very significant reservations about Sidiq Khan's diesel scrappage


scheme, which would cost in London ?515 million over two years. We want


to do that nationally, the cost would be ?3.5 billion per year over


two years, which I think is an affordable and will just cause one


set of diesel cars to be replaced by another. I don't support the diesel


scrappage scheme proposed by the Mayor of London. One fiscal measure


the Government might consider, given that diesel cars burned 10 million


tonnes of fuel every year, a three times increase over the last ten


years, the Government might consider introducing a significantly


increased registration tax for new diesel cars. I say cars, not vans or


lorries, in order to deter people from buying new diesel cars, which


make up half of the purchases in the country. It would have no effect


retrospectively on people that bought a diesel car already, but it


would encourage people to switch away from diesel cars in future. I


think it would greatly help ease pollution problems in cities like


London in the months and years ahead. I can see the time limit is


rapidly approaching. Let me conclude. I'm glad to something


popular on the benches opposite. Let me conclude by welcoming this


Budget, continuing the Government's record of job creation and growth,


and let me congratulate the Education Secretary and chief


secretary for protecting and growing education funding and committing to


fund more excellent schools in our country.


It was a dull budget. I don't say that as a criticism because it was


meant to be dull. The Chancellor did most of his heavy lifting in the


Autumn Statement when he amassed the war chest by borrowing ?120 billion.


The criticism is rather than use that to raise productivity, improve


productivity, he's put it aside because he doesn't know what will


happen after the Brexit deal is done. The education minister made a


reasonable fist of trying to explain the new levels but after half an


hour I began to think she was arguing a little bit too hard as if


she did not really believe it herself. I think one of the more


innovative parts of the budget was this. If you want a technical


education of the standard of Germany or the Netherlands you have to have


the schools, the workshops, the machinery in the schools to do the


teaching. The equivalent must be better than what you will get when


you get to the factory at you've graduated. That is how you raise


productivity, training at the highest level. If the budget had put


the money into schools, technical skills, and a level that you see in


Germany and the Netherlands, I might have believed the government.


Actually they are another addition to the fact that this government


wants to pursue selective education, for a narrow stream of people. You


will not solve the problem of productivity. The one thing that we


did get in the government was a rise in national insurance for the


self-employed. There is a building company and an


investment company. Does anybody know who these companies are? They


are both owned by the Chancellor of the Exchequer. In 2010 he put them


into a blind trust. He's a very honourable man so there is no


question of him influencing. Unlike certain presidents of the United


States. But it is interesting to see what these companies are thinking


about. The accounts say the building industry is suffering from supply


bottlenecks of skilled trades people driving up costs. What does the


building company say? The scarcity of good quality subcontractors is


still an issue and they are considering going back. This skills


and supply bottleneck is largely among the self-employed. To sum up,


the Federation of Master builders says 60% of construction firms are


struggling to hire bricklayers and carpenters. They claim the increase


will help supply some of this much-needed skill that is being


demanded. At the same time, this Chancellor is removing the incentive


to work and take your training because he's raising taxes on the


very workers his companies say they need. This Chancellor is so


short-sighted he is not only hurting his own business, sadly and


unfortunately he is hurting everybody else's. This is not just a


dull budget. At the heart there is a ticking time bomb. The forecast is


quite interesting about what happens next. It relates to whether the


money will be there to provide the training the Minister has been


talking about. The Chancellor was very concerned to tell us that


growth has been very strong in the last 12 months. Growth in this


country has been powered by consumer borrowing. The OBR says in 2016 the


ratio in the UK get a historical low.


But the OBR does not think that there is a potential for consumer


borrowing to continue to carry the economy. They are predicting there


will be a downturn in availability of consumer funds. This cannot


continue. Why? Most of the boost to consumer spending in the last year


is a hangover from 2015 people felt they were


better off and that is why they've been spending money in the last


year. With inflation now rising, because the pound has tanked, we can


expect that to disappear. So how will they reach the growth targets?


The OBR says it will be replaced by a rise in business investment. When


I asked, where was the evidence, they had a really wonderful answer.


It took my breath away. Business investment has been so low for so


long it is bound to go up sometime. That is what they said. Things can


only get better as my colleague says. I will believe that when I see


that. Just to amplify the point he's making, when you look at the book,


investment intentions have been put on hold. And yet when you turn the


page you find business investment goes between... It quite simply does


not add up, does it? Not only does it not add up it means we will have


the sharing which will raise productivity. We will miss the


target yet again. I say, since the Chancellor has amassed this war


chest he should be using it now, to wait and see what happens is not


something that anybody does, you need to invest now. So let's invest


in the schools. I think that would be good, but that is not what the


budget says. As I understand the government has invested and the


front bench can Mehdi confirmed, ?300 million that colleges can apply


for a technical status. Having spent 25 years of my life


teaching in further education, this is a tiny amount when you drill down


through the institutions. Can the government not... You're talking


about ?30 billion. If you don't want to spend it then fine. Don't pretend


these small amounts of money somehow solve the problem. The truth is...


I'm very grateful. The honourable member was my economic lecturer 30


years ago. We have delegated responsibility. It is the lack of


balance that has quite simply not work. We've not seen enough fiscal


responsibility from this government to create the circumstances that


will deliver sustainable growth. I thank my honourable friend and he is


right but I think it is important to pin the blame where it is deserved.


I think perhaps the Chancellor gets too much of the blame. The blame


lies in Downing Street, with the Prime Minister. Let me quote to you


from the Prime Minister's speech when she launched her leadership


bid. She said if there is a choice between further spending cuts, and


tax rises, the priority must be to avoid tax increases since they will


disrupt investment. Now we have a budget which is going to raise taxes


of the self-employed, the entrepreneurs, the people who


require the motivation to grow the economy and raise productivity. It


is the Prime Minister who has reneged on that leadership promise.


The Chancellor is already doing her bidding. This budget claims to


address the productivity question but is actually about selectivity.


What the budget has not done. The millennial generation is earning


less than its appearance. The budget does not do that because the


Chancellor set his war chest. Home ownership is falling among middle


earners for the first time in 50 years. Mrs Thatcher would be turning


in her grave if she heard that from a Conservative government. Average


incomes by 2021 will be a fifth less than it would have been if growth


had been continued at precrisis levels. ?5,000 less for every


household. You have not delivered a return to incomes and wealth for the


ordinary person. The Chancellor's fees on universal credits is one


person will have a lower real income in five years. The government has


not delivered for the ordinary person. This is a budget which does


not address the real issues of inequality in this country. It is a


budget for inertia and complacency and I will be voting against it. It


is a pleasure to follow the honourable gentleman and he had a


lot to say about education in England. Perhaps we would have liked


to hear more about it in Scotland. I've hardly started. I'd like to


tell you the outcomes in Scottish education of people going into work


are significantly higher than in this part of the UK. I'm very


grateful to be informed and before the honourable gentleman stood up I


did want to say to him at his colleague that the events of the


last 24 hours have convinced me more than ever before but I was right at


the beginning of this Parliament to move an amendment to give full


fiscal autonomy to Scotland with a modern equalisation formula which


will ensure prosperity across the nations of the United Kingdom and


replace the outdated Barnett formula so perhaps the SNP should not


intervene too often because basically I am on their side. I just


wanted to say a few words in defence of the government. I know this is


sometimes an unpopular thing to do but I do feel that the Chancellor


was courageous. I think it was the right thing to do. A storm has risen


above our heads. It is the right thing to do because it is about


honesty in politics. Too often we have had little giveaways and we


realise successive chancellors have taken back from is what they've


given to us. In plugging the gap, the Chancellor was trying to say


we've got to have a mature and grown-up debate in this country


about how we meet this funding gap. This debate will now run and run,


we've got a few months to think about it and come up with a


solution. When it is said there is a manifesto commitment, sometimes


circumstances change and you've got to do what is right for the country.


Manifesto commitments are not written in stone. If we have to


spend our money on social care, it is there. We know what will happen


with those words written in stone we have to have a mature debate about


how we paid for the National Health Service.


Why do I say this? I'm going to be completely honest about it. A lot


more needs to be done for our NHS. I rely, as do my family, entirely on


the NHS, we have no other providers, people of my age are deeply worried


about this funding crisis. We have seen what has happened to the mist


A targets, we have seen the report that puts the United Kingdom just


ahead of Slovenia. We, as a country, should be doing better than that. We


see worse, England was ranked 30th for accessibility because of the


exceptionally long waiting times for treatment. Figures from the OECD


show the Netherlands, Sweden, Germany and France top, while the UK


stands at just 8.5% of GDP. I think we need to have a mature debate


about how we are going to meet this funding gap people. The Kings fund


estimates if we wanted to close the gap solely by increasing NHS from


central government by 2021, we would need to increase by 30%, a whopping


?43 billion in real terms. It would push NHS spending to ?135 billion


overall. Are there any alternatives to these scenarios? I pose this


question, I know it is unpopular and people do not necessarily want to


debate it, we cannot raise this money from general taxation. There


is not the political will. We can't afford to do it. Not if we want to


maintain the NHS as a universal, noncontributory, entirely free at


the point of use system. Something has to give. The health consumer


interest points out a contrast between the two styles of health


care. One system is based on citizens taking out insurance


available from a range of providers, the systems like ours have one body


that provides all care. The largest countries like that, the UK, Spain


and Italy, keep clinging together in the middle of the index. The Health


Consumer Index rated the Dutch system is the best performing in


Europe. The Netherlands happens to have a Bismarck style system. I


believe, I know it is controversial, I know colleagues do not necessarily


want to debate it because politically it is very sensitive,


but I do think that without appointing a Royal commission,


wasting years, that ministers and the opposition really happy to have


an open mind about how we are going to raise more money for people, not


from general taxation, but actually moving, gradually, for parts of our


health care, to an insurance -based system, a socially insurance -based


system. We have to have the courage to think radically about following


the German and French example, and indeed the Australian example. If


you go to see a GP in Australia, you have to pay some money, if you don't


turn up, you lose the money. In France, if you see a doctor, if you


go to A, you have to pay, and if you can't afford to pay, it will be


returned to you, if you can, you have to make a contribution. I know


these are radical ideas. But if people are going to dismiss these


ideas, dismissed the need for an open debate about how we are going


to fund the health care system, they themselves have to explain to us how


they are going to raise money from general taxation. There is no points


of the attacking the Government for increasing national insurance


contributions, without themselves proposing how they are going to tax


a world beating health care system which is in all our interests. I


think we want an open debate on that. I will return to education for


a moment. I think we need to have a realistic debate about this as well.


On both sides of the chamber, I think the way to approach the debate


is to say I believe in grammar schools or, on all accounts, I


oppose selective education in any shape or form. I think the


opposition has to ask themselves, it is a serious question, why social


mobility has declined so catastrophically in our most


deprived areas. The solution may not be to have grammar schools in our


deprived areas. It may be to have more academic streams in conference


of schools. It may be that if you set out some selective schools, you


only do so in deprived areas. The solution may be that you only


provide places for academically gifted children who come from


deprived backgrounds. If Ideologically you say we are not


going to go down that route at all, we believe in neighbourhood


comprehensives in deprived areas, you have to ask yourselves while


social mobility is declining, has declined and will go on declining. I


think the Prime Minister is trying to open up a serious and interesting


debate. I think the Health Secretary is starting to open up a serious and


interesting debate about how we are going to fund the NHS. I think the


Chancellor of the Exchequer is opening up a serious and interesting


debate about how we are going to find the money to meet all of our


needs in the future. In those terms, on that basis, I welcome the Budget


speech. It is a pleasure to follow the Right Honourable Gentleman for


Gainsborough. I think he made a thoughtful and forward-looking


speech. I have to say, on the matter of insurance -based payments to fund


the NHS, in regards to his points on selective education, I could not


disagree with him more. I think it is the wrong approach for this


country should take. I want to mention three key points in my


contribution. The first is the position of the national debt. This


year's economic and fiscal outlook document states, and I quote, the


fiscal mandate has targeted different measures of the deficit at


different horizons, which I think is a beautifully diplomatic way of


saying that the Government keeps moving the goalposts and still fails


to score the goal. The OBR goes on to state that the Government does


not appear to be on track to meet its stated fiscal objective to


return public finances to balance at the earliest possible date in the


next Parliament. They have failed on the deficit, but they are failing


catastrophically on the debt. In 2010, the Government expected public


sector net debt to be falling as a share of GDP, having forecast to


reach a high of 70.3% in 2013-14, falling to 67.4% by 2015-16.


However, in every single year that the Tories have been in number 11,


net debt has rose in actual and relative terms. It reached 87.3% of


GDP last year. It is going to rise to this Parliament. The red book


forecasts that it is to reach 88.9% this year. When the coalition took


office, public sector net debt was ?771 billion. This year, it reached


?1.6 trillion. The Redbook forecast it is going to rise again throughout


this Parliament, to ?1.9 trillion. This is my first key point. In


little over a decade, the Tories will have increased the public


sector debt by 146%, by over ?1 trillion. In his statement, the


Chancellor said we will not saddle our children with ever increasing


debts. However, when Tory councillors have increased the


public debt by almost 150% in a decade, saddling children with ever


debt seems to be precisely what this government is doing. With the


honourable gentleman join me in welcoming the fact that the deficit


has gone down from 11% of GDP when Labour left office, down to 3% of


GDP today? But the public sector debt is almost touching ?2 trillion!


The honourable gentleman cannot be satisfied with that situation when


the whole nature of Tory government since 2010 has been not only to


reduce the deficit, but also to get the debt and a manageable


conditions. On that point, having debt on a low and falling proportion


of GDP provides some scope to absorb the impact of any future economic


shock. That was the case with the Labour Government in the run-up to


2008. In many respects, it was the runner-up in respect to the Thatcher


government in 1988-1989. We will hit any economic turbulence or downturn


with public sector debt being about 85% of GDP. That is not giving us


the flexibility to respond and help firms and families in a robust and


strong way. The second point I want to make is the nature of the


economic recovery. Seven years ago, Tory Chancellor's first budget for


13 years, it stated the British economy had become unbalanced, too


reliant on growth, driven by the accumulation of unsustainable levels


of private-sector debt and rising public sector debt. Growth was


confined to a limited number of sectors and regions. I have


mentioned above public sector debt. It is true to say that the British


economy has performed well. The UK was the fastest-growing economy in


the G7 last year. However, scratch below the surface and it is


questionable precisely who is benefiting from that growth and what


sort of growth we are having. Of course, growth is growth. That has


got to be welcomed. But the British economy seems to be reverting to


type, which could, in turn, leave us vulnerable to long-term challenges


and could fail for us to take advantage of great opportunities. In


terms of who is benefiting from the growth, the UK has been the only big


advanced economy in which wages have contracted while the economy has


expanded. Households are facing a period of 15 years in which average


real wage growth did not happen. Average earnings, in real terms, are


expected to be the same in 20-22 as they were in 2007. This period, the


length period of stagnant wages, is unprecedented in the UK since before


the Industrial Revolution. And yet, despite the lack of wage growth,


household consumption is powering the economy. I think in a powerful


contribution from the honourable gentleman for East Lothian, he


mentioned this. It led to an expansion in the dominant services


sector. If consumption growth is running faster than wage growth, it


means people are reducing their savings or reducing borrowings. As


the governor of the Bank of England said in January, UK expansion is


increasingly consumption led. Evidence across a range of countries


suggests episodes of consumption led growth tends to be both slower and


less durable. And household debt to income ratio has increased this year


alone from 140.8%, to 143.9%. These are worrying trends. We are not


seeing an increase in investment and we are not seeing an export led


recovery. Business investment has constantly undershot expectations.


There has actually been a fall, year-on-year, in business investment


last year of 1.5%. Despite the drop in Stirling's value against the


dollar by a fifth by June 23, we have not seen a booming exports, as


might be expected. In fact, the trade deficit widened to ?13.6


billion in quarter three of 2016. It was due predominantly to a trading


goods deficit getting larger by ?8.5 billion. My third point is that we


need a new model of the economy. To be fair to the Prime Minister, when


she came into Number 10, she said she wants to see an economy that


works for everyone. She said she wanted to see public sector reform


to ensure growth is re-balanced and reaches all parts of the UK. That is


not what we saw in last week's budget. The government back row has


referred to an industrial strategy as the path to which such growth


could be achieved. The Chancellor failed to mention the term


industrial strategy once in his financial statement, which I think


demonstrates the extent of the buy in from the Treasury on the concept.


We talk about rebalancing the regions, but as a north-eastern MP,


I could not find any reference to the north in this whatsoever, let


alone in terms of making sure we have an economy that works for


everyone. As we on the select committee said in the recent


publication into our inquiry into industrial strategy, Government


tends to operate in silos. This sadly shows business as usual, more


of the same. The government back intervenes in the economy every day,


from taxes to regulation, as the red book shows. It can do that in an ad


hoc and piecemeal way, or as part of a coordinated, strategic purpose.


The Budget sadly seemed to stress the former. It is true that the


Budget talks about skills as being essential. The Chancellor's


announcement of technical education is welcome, but we don't see any


fruits of that until 2020-21. The industrial strategy also talks about


ensuring we are one of the most competitive places in the world to


start and grow business. Yet the national insurance contributions


debacle, attacks on enterprise, ambition and the personal risk taken


by entrepreneurs. The committee would have liked to have seen a more


ambitious approach, where Government, working with business,


set a long-term direction for the economy in the pursuit of tackling


global and national challenges. Where in the budget was the vision


on decarbonisation? Where on the budget was the ambition to be the


leading economy to exploit the fourth Industrial Revolution? Sadly,


we got the same short-term tinkering, which will not address


many of the issues such as low productivity, skills deficiencies


and massive regional imbalances. If the Prime Minister is serious about


an economy that works for everyone we need a step change in the way the


economy works. An industrial strategy could be the means by which


we achieve that. Sadly, with this Budget, we saw business as usual.


Thank you for calling me to speak in this important debate. It is a


pleasure to follow the Honourable Member for Hartlepool and the


considered speech he has just made. I would like to congratulate the


Secretary of State for her passion and commitment to social mobility.


We have seen this today and we have seen it in the Budget. I am so


pleased she is doing everything possible to ensure that my


constituents have the opportunity to realise their potential.


I particularly welcome the commitment to technological


education. This is truly a budget for skills and the reason I care so


much about that is this is a vitally important investment for the future


of my constituency. Telford has a proud past as the birthplace of the


Industrial Revolution. I will continue to say that it is the


birthplace of the Industrial Revolution. We have the invention of


the inclined plane, the Ironbridge, I could go on but I am here to talk


about skills. Over the years, we've been able to overcome obstacles and


find solutions to many problems. As a result of that, it has become a


dynamic, vibrant centre of the modern Industrial Revolution. With


high skilled, high-paid jobs on offer to the young people of


Telford. I was addressing a sixth form some years ago which is in my


constituency, and I said in the course of that discussion that


university is not for everyone. Many graduates feel ill-equipped for the


world of work on graduating and some of them feel in a state of high debt


and low-paid jobs. There was shovelling and silence, then it


became clear that almost all of the students were being encouraged to go


on to university and that is what they were planning to do. At that


stage they didn't have the choice that is now being offered to them.


We now have a clear-cut quality alternative so that students can


spend those 16 years preparing for the world of work, and that must be


a good thing because Intel first we need to make sure that our young


people have the right skills and the work readiness and abilities to take


full advantage of the opportunities of these high skilled, high-tech


jobs coming to Telford. When I meet employers they tell me about the


skills gap and they see that as being a major challenge. The budget


measures will address this. We already have some fantastic


organisation is working hard to upscale our young people and I want


to take the opportunity to mention training and colleges but do


fantastic work. But also, and equally important, the skills


training offered by our primary schools in Telford. I think we're


doing something unique. I want to tell the house about this because I


believe this is a model other primary schools should seek to


follow. At the primary school which I visited quite recently every


single child uses technology in the classroom in an amazing advanced


way. They are getting skills which will equip them for the tasks of the


future. They were making flowerpots for outdoor areas. Even today I had


a school from Telford visiting me and one of the young boys told me


about how they are learning to code in primary school. Many still do


this. We need to build on these technical skills young people learn


at this very young age. I think it is fantastic that we can build on


that so that we can create a workforce for tomorrow for jobs that


have not even yet been created. This is vital for us to be global and


competitive. So I say well done to Richard Smith and all the companies


that go round the primary schools helping them from the youngest age


you can imagine. You're giving them the skills they need to thrive.


Particular well done to the Secretary of State for introducing


this transformative approach. In the same way we are helping those


children do what they wish to do and we are boosting UK productivity and


competitiveness in a post-Brexit world. I welcome the budget and many


other measures in their budget and I want to mention the measures in


their four women. The 5 million for the centenary of the votes for women


in 1918. That's incredibly important that we mark that incredible


milestone. The 5 million for returners. Those are important


measures. Does she share the dismay that when her government talks about


giving support to domestic violence victims it refuses to get rid of the


repugnant sexual assault clause? I am glad she welcomes that money and


think it is extremely important as government goes on recognising these


victims and I believe our Prime Minister is 100% behind that. In


conclusion, Madam Deputy Speaker, I welcome the budget and specifically


are Secretary of State, and I know that it will benefit from the


measures she has set out. I've heard a few budgets, the first was Sir


Geoffrey Howe, a thoroughly decent man. I remember his budget and I


thought the budget that we just had was deeply disappointing. In the


context of the miserable votes last night where this government is


heading into hard Brexit, I expected an imaginative budget. What Harold


Macmillan said was events, events. There will be many more. This


country will be rocked by events and this was not a budget that helps


anybody. This is the average town in Britain. I have to say that the


dreadful state, closing accident and emergency services, closing the


hospital, this chaos up-and-downer country. Two thirds of the health


services in our country are in dreadful trouble. Most of the local


authorities I know, the real parts of Britain, not the leafy suburbs


but those real parts in deep trouble, unable to bear the cost of


care. I was expecting something imaginative from this budget and we


didn't get it. In terms of education, we got very little. Where


could we get alternative funding? We were on the liaison committee. I


used to call them part of the barmy Army but he did think a lot. He's


always been quite provocative and has something to say but we do need


imagination and passion. I heard little fashion. Every child in this


country has potential and if we cannot create a system that


liberates that we are not doing our job. The disaster of our education


system is good primary schools with bright little kids and then we lose


them after the age of 11. What sort of country is that? What sort of


school system is it? We've seen some real change and there are signs of


improvement. And I want to give very briefly the test that most teachers


give, the two stars on the wish list. I want to say, I'm going to


give a start to the fact that there is a good, fundamental policy


approach to skills in this budget. But we've been languishing in skills


for so long, who would have thought, John Prescott, this crazy man of the


left who wanted to have a levy, this left-wing horror. Well, we've got an


apprenticeship levy. We should have that. We will hopefully see it


succeeding. We will also have, because the government has done it,


gone about policy-making in a sensible way. They took evidence and


they consulted, they put Lord Sainsbury in charge, they had a


former minister, he got to know something about skills and training.


He's gone now but some of us will miss him. He did listen. He


introduced Lord Sainsbury to the skills commission which I share and


I give evidence about what I wanted to see as a skills policy and some


of that is in the policy which came through in the budget. I welcome


that. The select committee, when I cheered it, we used to applaud


evidence -based policies. There is something here in terms of what


Alison Ruoff admitted to the committee, talking to employers,


businesses, on a cross-party basis. That's the way to make policy. The


honourable gentleman is speaking with great passion. Can I give him


another solution? Perhaps end the fiction that national insurance


contributions can pay for all social care, merge it with taxation,


simplify and try to make more money that way? He is to be complimented


on being a good out-of-the-box thinker. On productivity, it is


really only a half star because we cannot really check this additional


investment. There is a world-class infrastructure investment. Most of


that I like even though I am one of these people who cannot believe HS2,


all that national treasure that is being put into a motorway that will


be out of date by the time it is built. But I know that I am in a


minority on that. 300 million for the development of future research


talent in the UK. I like all that but it is good stuff. All that stuff


is about disruptive technology. Artificial intelligence. That is


good stuff but, mad gets the speaker -- Madam Deputy Speaker, I know that


research has not been high enough and the cooperation between business


and universities has not been good enough, and I know that productivity


will never get the levels we want until we have that kind of


relationship. Lastly, the wish I have, where is the evidence that


grammar schools and free schools do anything about finding that spark in


children? No research, no evidence, not one reputable search believes


selective education helped anybody. It is the reverse. All the research,


experience, just look at Kent. For God's sake. It is the most selective


in the country and the worst performance across all schools in


the country. That is selective education. Selective education has


no research base, no experience base, no global comparison where we


can say, isn't it wonderful? They don't have it in Denmark, they don't


have it in Sweden, they don't have it in Finland, I doubt they have it


in Shanghai. I like policy based on good research, good evaluation and,


yes, sometimes across the party divide. That's the way to make


policy. This budget hasn't delivered it and if we want that spark to be


found and promoted, and for a country to be rich and successful,


in a challenging disaster, it is not this budget.


Thank you, Madam Deputy Speaker. I am delighted to follow the


Honourable Member for Huddersfield. We co-chair the All-party Group On


Manufacturing together and we are involved in many other things. He


displayed his typical fashion... His typical fashion? Is typical passion


in his speech this afternoon. At a time when we must be forward-looking


in our approach, in our increasingly dynamic economy, tying in with the


industrial strategy, there is, I believe, much to the optimistic


about. I would like to start by acknowledging the positive news in


terms of employment. A record high in terms of 31.8 million people in


work, also reflected locally in figures in my constituency, a 74%


fall in unemployment since 2010. Businesses can be particularly proud


of this achievement. As the unemployment figure falls, it


becomes increasingly difficult to reduce that figure further. For this


reason, we must think differently about developing the skills base,


not least in terms of investment in are and deep, and industry 4.0. A


prime example of an idea we must implement into our policy, spanning


a range of departments. I also welcome the introduction of


T-Levels. Technical education has the potential to boost productivity.


The new system being introduced in 2019 increases the number of hours


on such courses and includes good, strong work placements. I spoke


recently on a debate on the productivity plan. If we are to


improve productivity in the UK, we must first improve our skills in our


domestic base. He investment in technical education is a boost,


rising to over 500 million per year. Our own Warwickshire College, in my


constituency, is an example of what we can achieve. Given parity to


respect, too technical education, is, in relation to A-levels,


something I have long believed in. I am pleased to see the Government


raise the significance of this standard. More generally,


strengthening ties between our education system and business should


be a priority. Particularly as the demands on business will continue to


shift with the changing landscapes of the economy. On productivity and


building on the announcement of the National productivity investment


fund, during the Autumn Statement, I welcome the funding in the spring


budget to upgrade transport infrastructure, not least in the


Midlands this will see 23 million directed towards improving the


transport network. Wider spending on infrastructure, with a focus on


providing the very best framework for business to operate within is


vital. The launch of the industrial strategy fund is also very welcome,


particularly with focus on investing in innovation. It is absolutely


right, and I hope it can be built on as the strategy develops. During the


Queen 's speech debate last year, I spoke of the importance of shaping


and industrial strategy to give certainty and confidence to British


business. Despite being a little alone with that opinion on this side


of the house, I welcome the Green paper and the development of the


department. With this new funding, projects such as Federer the


capabilities of the automotive sector, increasing the longevity of


batteries in electric vehicles can go a long way in sustaining a


prosperous future. Investment in infrastructure and are and Dee is


vital if potential is to be realised. -- R I welcome the


launch of the Midlands Engine Strategy, which is specifically


mentions the automotive industry. The fact that 39% of the UK


employment in the UK is in our region. Providing additional support


to the Midlands is the most effective weight of enabling the UK


to take a greater share of the international market. Regional


empowerment should be a key consideration in government policy,


and sustained support for the Midlands Engine is vital. A final


point I would like to raise is that concern of a number of businesses in


my constituency regarding business rates. In recent weeks, I have


canvassed opinion locally on the upcoming changes to rateable values.


By way of example, a pub in my constituency is seeing a rise from


18,000, 260 8000. Another is seeing an from 33,000, 294,000. Elsewhere,


a business is seeing the rateable value rise to


?12,500. Even for successful enterprises, the significant hikes


in business rates risked job losses and closures of businesses


altogether. The ?1000 business rate discount, for one year, for pubs


with a rateable value up to ?100,000 is put into context with the rises I


have just mentioned. Allocating 400 35mm pounds towards supporting those


that will be particularly impacted is welcome, but I urge the


Chancellor to review this issue urgently. Maiden speech, Gareth


Snell. Thank you very much for the opportunity to make this, my maiden


speech, during an important debate on education and skills. Both are


vital to the future success of my constituency, albeit a greater


challenge follows sustained underfunding of Stoke schools. It is


a pleasure to have been elected as the member of Parliament for


Stoke-on-Trent Central. In an election that was not planned, and


from a campaign which come all too often, did not do justice to the


wonderful city that I now represent. Many colleagues on these benches


and, I would wager, on the benches opposite, who came to Stoke-on-Trent


during the by-election would struggle to reconcile the vibrant,


welcoming and proud city they visited with the portrait painted by


national media. All too often, cameras lingered over this used to


bottle kilns, while our resurgence in high-tech ceramic went


unmentioned. Journalists posed by abandoning shop fronts, just yards


away from the thriving cultural Quarter and Ryrie did -- are rarely


did the world-class university feature in reports. They talked down


the city to play up their own narrative. They dismissed the


capital of culture as little more than the capital of Brexit. They


pigeonholed my constituents into a box that does not reflect their true


character. While that narrative suited those seeking to win the


election on a platform of hatred, division and nationalism dressed up


as patriotism, it did a grave disservice to my city, whose motto


is United, Stronger In Strength. My city demonstrated that nationalism


of any sort has no place in our politics. My challenge, for however


long I am blessed to represent Stoke-on-Trent in this place, is to


champion everything great and good about our city. To recognise our


problems, but also recognise our many achievements. To shout loud and


shout often about why the potteries, above all else, is the best place in


the UK, if not the world. In the Potteries, we are innovators


and educators, artists and entrepreneurs. We pioneered the


first industrial revolution, something that has been discussed


quite a lot this afternoon. We also have the potential to lead the next.


We are the home of Reginald Mitchell, Josiah Wedgwood, of


Clarence Cliff and, more recently, Robbie Williams. But, most


importantly, we are home to the Staffordshire oatcake, a delicacy


seldom found outside of the ST postcode, but, once savoured, is


never forgotten. I would like to try it. We were the beating heart of a


ceramic empire that stretched to the four corners of the world, and now


proud members of the Turnover Club can be inspecting tableware for the


important backstab, hoping to find the five greatest words in the


English language, made in Stoke-on-Trent. It is a ceremony


that my own daughter has taken up with vigour. So enthusiastically


does she want to discover the origin of her dinner plate that she has


sometimes forgotten to finish its contents before training is over and


depositing the contents in her lap. It was with utter joy that when I


arrived in this place, the first cup of tea I had was in a cup produced


in my city. Technically it is in Stoke-on-Trent North, but I am sure


my honourable friend will not mind sharing for the purposes of this


speech. But ceramics is not just our history and heritage, it is our


present. With the write-up from this Government, can be our future. --


the right help from this Government. In the middle of my constituency, on


an otherwise unassuming window in the city centre, you will see a


life-sized picture of TV's Eric Knowles, best known as the ceramic


expert on the antiques Road show. He proudly proclaims that the potteries


Museum and Art Gallery boasts a greater collection of ceramics than


even the fee and -- V A discussion which I will no doubt


have with the V's new director. Which, Mr Speaker, allows me to


segue neatly into paying tribute to my predecessor, Tristram Hunt.


Although like me not a native son of Stoke-on-Trent, anyone who met him


knew that the potteries had found his way into his heart. A fervent


champion of Stoke-on-Trent, never was an opportunity missed to extol


the virtues of our ?6. His ability to bring people together and ignite


them with a passion for The Potteries will be sorely missed. It


was the city's children that most preoccupied his efforts. He knew the


best hope for the continuing resurgence of the city was to ensure


that every young person had a good education and the best possible


start in life. He was a champion of sure start, one of Labour's greatest


achievements. For the doubters opposite, something we will rescue


in the next Labour government. He was a frequent visitor to the many


wonderful schools across the constituency. He delivered the Maths


Excellence Partnership to improve standards in local schools and give


young people the skills they need to prosper. He knew the value of


inspiring children to read and foster a love of books. His enduring


legacy in Stoke-on-Trent Central will be a generation of children


who, through his work on the literary festival, have been able to


expand their reading, take a creative writing and explore a world


of literature which otherwise would have passed them by. As we speak of


the importance of education and training for post-Brexit Britain,


these achievements and the ongoing challenges are as important as ever.


He was a thoughtful and forceful voice in this house and beyond, and


I know his contributions will be missed. But he is one of a longline


of distinguished parliamentarians to have Stoke-on-Trent Central. Whether


it be Mark Fisher, in his campaign for local health services and to


ensure the sovereignty of Parliament, or Bob Cant, my


constituency has been saved by dedicated public servants and I will


do my utmost to continuing that tradition. My predecessor was a man


who loved our movement's history, but I am a man who lived it. Going


from my grandfather, a union replicon I was taught from a young


age that a greater strength working people have is our solidarity. It


was a lesson that embodied his own life, representing his colleagues at


the chicken factory where he worked and representing his friends and


neighbours as a Labour counsellor. My childhood taught me to always


stand up for what I believe, and to always speak my mind. The latter, Mr


Speaker, it has to be said, has sometimes brought mixed results. 140


characters coming up later. Nevertheless, it was that advice


that has served me well and which my wife, Sophia, and I would be proud


to pass on to my daughter, Hannah. I would also like to put on record my


thanks to the Labour movement, friends in the Labour Party, the


co-operative party and the trade unions for their assistance in my


collection. Particular thanks to my honourable friend, the member for


Birmingham, and my new neighbours in Stoke-on-Trent North and South. Ours


is a politics based on comradeship, in which the strength of our common


endeavour means that we really do achieve more together than we


achieve alone. Those same values of fairness, cooperation and social


justice run through the history of Stoke-on-Trent and its people. They


were on display in 1942, when the North Staffordshire mining community


help to rebuild the village in the Czech Republic after it was raised


by the Nazis. The driving force behind that was another of my


predecessors, and at the time he said the lamp dispels the shadows on


the coal face. It can also send a ray of light across the sea to those


that struggle in darkness. At its best, that is what the Labour


movement has always been, a ray It is my immense privilege to be


part of that movement in Parliament and teacher tried in my own small


way to help all that lamp aloft. It is a responsibility I will do my


best to meet as I strive to give a voice to those people I represent


and showcase all that is great about Stoke-on-Trent. Thank you Mr


Speaker. Can I say, it's a great pleasure to follow the honourable


member for Stoke-on-Trent Central, giving his maiden speech. We all


remember our maiden speeches and I personally thought it was an


excellent speech full of passion, conviction, and maybe a shiver came


through these benches that we have a man of conviction, which is what


this post needs in my very humble opinion. From Staffordshire oatcakes


to the surrounding empire, we heard it all. You represent an honourable


seat and I'm sure you will do an honourable job and it is a delight


to follow your maiden speech. Mr Speaker, in my short eight minutes I


would like to congratulate the government on an excellent job so


far bearing in mind the appalling inheritance that we had in 2010,


along with the banking crisis and many other factors, that led to the


massive cash crisis we face. The UK economy is forecast to grow by 2%,


real wages to rise every year, deficit due to fall and the


proportion due to fall. All this is to be most welcomed and I


congratulate the government of which I am proud to be a member. I'm glad


the government is not ashamed to mention the dire financial


circumstances are country faces. Wherever I go, and I'm sure most


members are the same, we cannot wash over the fact that we are still on a


knife edge. We are told that the figures are still there, that the


debt, private debt, which is not often mentioned is a similar figure,


?50 billion a year of debt interest, more than we spend on defence and


policing together. These are horrifying figures and ones that the


government and front bench are trying desperately to deal with. I


would not be doing my duty if I did not raise some concerns about the


budget although overall I support it. Can I pick up on the word


fairness because it is used a lot by the Chancellor. I'm not sure that


resounds with those who will be affected by one or two tax rises. I


long, as I am a Conservative, to hear from a Conservative Chancellor


attacks vision from this country, a massive reform for the tax system,


one of the most complicated in the world. Why can't we have a tax rate


that is flat of 30%, keep it simple, stupid. That is what we were told. I


think there's a lot of room for that in the tax system in this country.


The reason we cannot have a straight tax is the top 2% pay a quarter of


all income tax and it would be impossible to move to a true flat


tax. You could simplify and have two rates, merge capital taxes into


income taxes and then you would start to get rid of the poverty and


unemployment trap. I entirely concur with my honourable friend. His


intervention is spot on. The other point that I've noticed, everything


is ring fenced. Every department is ring fenced. We hear them say there


is a little room for manoeuvre. Can I suggest we take it away and think


radically over areas like the national health service and look at


things in the round for the future of our country? I would like to have


heard a lot more about the future of Brexit and a vision from the


Chancellor which I don't believe I did. Good to touch on some issues,


the first is the national insurance hike which I am concerned about


because many of them work in my constituency. The money raised will


be pitiful. We've heard about a manifesto pledge being broken and I


believe it has been. I'm not saying they cannot be broken but if we are


getting to look for more money the overseas budget is the area we


should look at. Many in my constituency believe we should help


the less well off but to set an arbitrary figure of 0.7% GDP I think


is too far and one that the country cannot afford because so many areas


in national life are calling for more money. These self applied


people take risks that the employed do not. We know that. They risk


their homes, their livelihoods and their families. That is why they had


the tax advantage. There has been a as far as pensions are concerned but


I believe the risk takers, the people we need to create the wealth


and prosperity, especially as we move to leave the EU, should not be


penalised. The self-employed will be required to fill four income tax


forms a year instead of one. It needs to be done digitally. Speak to


farmers about applying for grants digitally it is not always easy. You


require an accountant, an extra cost, and income tax paid a quarter


rather than one or two instalments. This will affect the cash flow and


in good times or bad times it is important to have the annual look


rather than the effective look. Probate fees is not there but I am


concerned about that. At the moment the cost accounts to ?215. It is


worth noting it could range from ?300 - ?20,000. The press have


dubbed this the death tax. I think that's a fair comment and I would


like to touch on inheritance tax. I declare an interest. I personally


think it is completely immoral. We pay taxes all our life, a lot of


tax. When we die, 40% is charged to the States. This is completely


immoral. Let me called David Cameron, he said this, and I quote,


we will take the family out of inheritance tax. That home that you


worked for belongs to you and your family. You should be able to pass


it on to your children. I concur. What I would like to see is the


following. Abolish inheritance tax. Simplify the tax system. Invest much


more in technology colleges. Money should be targeted rather than any


other ring fenced area. Business rates concern me and Tim Martin of


Wetherspoon is says supermarkets will get away with it and his pubs


will get hammered. Lastly, can we stop using tax avoidance and evasion


in the same sentence? Tax evasion is a legal, tax avoidance, we all do it


for our family's sake. Thank you. Can I start by congratulating the


new member for Stoke-on-Trent, I thought it was a very interesting


speech, are very hopeful speech given the economic situation. I'm


sure that the new member will do his constituency proud. Having said


that, if we look at the budget and put it in the context of the


austerity measures, these austerity measures will be far longer, and


people wonder why people like Donald Trump get elected, because of


austerity, and because it has gone on far too long and I would expect


the budget to offer at least some hope to the British people but all


we've had is that those of further austerity. If we look at our


situation, we were told the deficit would be eliminated by the end of


the last Parliament. In actual fact the Chancellor is extending it. We


found that the UK Lancs 103 of 112 countries. 6 million people left


than the living wage and 4 million people in poverty. When we left


office we retained a triple-A rating. We had 30,000 more doctors.


This government is living off the benefits of that. Another broken


promise of this government has been touched on and I won't elaborate but


the manifesto promise was broken in relation to manifesto contributions.


This was a Tory manifesto pledge which will affect self-employed


people, especially those in the lower paid bracket. For example, you


get taxi drivers, so the rich will not be better off but it will be


hitting hard working people. There has been no reversal of the cuts and


the changes and this will hit disabled people very hard. The


government alone some people to pass on property free from inheritance


tax. Not only do we get lobbied in our surgeries but also at home. My


son was speaking to me the other day. He's going to have to do the


quarterly tax returns and he's tempted to vote Labour! This is the


unfortunate side-effect from their point of view. It seems to me that


the party opposite is no longer the party of the self-employed, no


longer the party of white van man and woman. The party of themselves.


The party opposite is something that has never been on the side of the


working man. I'm quite surprised that claims that some people thought


for the party opposite. When we look at health, the funding


of social care is welcome but it is too little, too late. It is putting


a plaster over a wound and this will not solve the long-term social care


issues. Funding for the National Health Service is needed, but it


will not help in the longer term. Greater investment is needed.


Council tax increases will raise money in the short term, but this


will not solve the problem in the longer term will stop in commentary,


the increase in council tax will generate around ?443 million. But


with the national living wage increases, it will cost about ?600


million. The government is devolving social care to local authorities


because the Government has abdicated response ability and shifted the


burden onto local people, not through general taxation. If we look


at pensions, nothing in the budget to address the problems, and women's


issues have certainly been mentioned in a large number of debates, over a


long period of time, but on issues that really affect these particular


women, and I will not go into the detail of the hardship these women


have experienced, it is well known to the house. The Government has


done nothing to reverse that. The Government says more women are in


work. That might be true, but more women have to work longer. It is


also often in lower paid, manual jobs. If we look at business rates,


small businesses in the High Street, they are hit the hardest. A ?1000


for a pub is not a lot when you take it in the great scheme of things, it


is only a gesture that will not help in a meaningful way. Education, if


we look at education, instead of funding free schools, money should


be invested in existing schools. They are being asked to find ?3


billion worth of cuts. Resources are already stretched to breaking point.


Local authorities in commentary have always taken the decision to fund


schools well. The National formula will leave pupils with less funding,


yet the Government says no pupils will be worse off. Will they


guarantee money to make sure that the funding formula does not leave


Coventry schools with a shortfall? By 2020, funding by people will be


cut in real terms by 16% for schools. 16-18 education will be in


a similar level to that of 30 years ago, in real terms. The Chancellor


has ignored the funding crisis in the Budget. The costs are ongoing


because of increases and employer contribution to national insurance,


and there has been no additional funding. Women will still have to


prove that their third or subsequent child was a product of rape to get a


child benefits. Once again, we see women being discriminated against


through this government. Women are still disproportionately affected by


austerity. It is very likely a repeat of the ?20 million announced


last November. It might not be new money. Then we come onto the


Midlands. The 392 million for the Midlands, wireless is welcome, is


not sufficient if you have real intentions with relation to


developing the economy of the West Midlands. Coventry and Warwickshire,


when you look at it, only 42.4 million. ?20 million for the


Midlands Skills Challenge will improve employment prospects in the


area. 4 million to support the Midlands engine project. ?20 million


for broadband infrastructure. 11 million to support skills and


apprenticeships in Coventry and Warwickshire. It will not solve the


problems across the country. While investment is welcome, there are


also housing pressures that need tackling. London have been awarded


ten times as much for housing. Since 2010, there has been a 40% cut in


government funding for local councils. Small businesses and the


High Street will be hit hard by business rate rises. This will not


be addressed in the Midlands Engine strategy. By 2020, the Conservative


government will have put ?655 million on commentary council


budget. The strategy will not cover that shortfall. When we look at


social care, the NHS desperately needs funding and the local


authorities expect a deficit of ?43 million by 2020-21 in social care.


Finally, this proposal is superficially attractive, but it


will not address some of the long-term issues in the West


Midlands. Thank you. Can I start by congratulating my


honourable friend the member for Stoke-on-Trent Central for his


excellent maiden speech, which I enjoyed very much. Moved many of us


to laughter and tears, though I gently correct him that Stoke is not


the centre of the known universe, that is another place in the West


Midlands, called Birmingham. I will let him off, because it was a


first-rate start to his Parliamentary life and I wish him


all the very best. I wanted to focus my remarks on the government record


and its failure on its own terms. I noted with interest that government


benches are all but empty. Maybe it is because Government backbenchers


are not lining up to come along and defend the increase in national


insurance, given the row between Number 10 and number 11. I think it


may also go on longer than that. Long before we had the failed and


broken manifesto commitment on national insurance, this Government


failed the test it set for itself, it's central mission when it came


into Government in 2010, the one promise they made this country, that


they would eliminate the deficit in five years. In the age of austerity,


it was the only way to achieve it. Well, the Budget documents are


clear. In 2016-17, and I am glad more government members are coming


in, and they can hear their Government's failure on the deficit


in person. In 2016-17, the deficit will be ?51.7 billion. In 2017-18,


it will be ?58.3 billion. By 2021-2022, it will still be ?16.8


billion. The deficit on this trajectory will not be eliminated


until 2025-26, a full 15 years after that famous promise made in 2010


when the Government Saturday would eliminated in five years. That is


the true, shameful record of this Government. It sits alongside a much


starker, indeed more catastrophic reality on living standards for


ordinary working people. I think Government members should stop


chuntering and listen to what they have done to ordinary working people


in our country. On current forecasts, average earnings will be


no higher in 2022 than they were in 2007. That amounts to 15 years


without a pay rise for ordinary working people in our country.


According to the Revolution Foundation, families are missing out


on ?12,000 worth of pay growth by 2020, the worst decade in 210 years.


That is what this Government has delivered for ordinary working


people. They used to taunt us on this side of the house with a slogan


that we didn't fix the roof when the sun was shining, for people going 15


years without a pay rise, it is as if the sun has never shone at all. I


was disappointed on Universal Credit in particular, on this issue of pay,


wages, jobs and growth, because the Government failed to take any action


to set off the cuts that are planned in Universal Credit for later in


this Parliament. I do say to Conservative members who kicked up


such a fuss, rightfully, on the changes planned by the former


Chancellor of the Exchequer on tax credits, that what happened in terms


of the U-turn, it was not truly a U-turn because the cuts are still


coming down the tracks and many of the same people will still be


affected when many of those who are currently on tax credits moved on to


Universal Credit is. That will happen towards the end of this


Parliament. At the moment, only 170,000 people are in receipt of


Universal Credit. By the end of the parliament, millions of families


will be on Universal Credit. The Secretary of State's warm words on


opportunity mean nothing given to what is being done to the working


poor. The cuts to allowances, only a tiny concession was given on the


Autumn Statement when he reduced the paper rate to 63%. It still remains


the case that a lone parent, earning ?16,000, will lose ?2800. The


measures in the Autumn Statement will only give them back ?200 of


money. They will beat 2006 of the pounds a year worse off. Those are


not small sums of money. They are the difference between keeping a


roof over your head or being homeless. The difference between


putting food on the table and watching your children go hungry. It


is unacceptable that is the record, that is the delivery that the


Government is putting on the people of our country in 21st-century


Britain. Politics, in the end, is always about choices and priorities.


This Government has set aside choices in corporation tax cuts


which, by 2021-22, will total ?11.2 billion. They can make a different


choice and choose to spend the money elsewhere, maybe on Universal


Credit, perhaps on social care, perhaps to alleviate the crisis in


the National Health Service. It is a choice they are making it is not the


case that cuts to tax would be necessary to make sure we have jobs


growth in the country, because we have seen what has happened to wages


and we know that business investment is nowhere near where it could be.


Cuts to corporation tax being pocketed as profits more than they


are delivering for the rest of the economy. They should be


reconsidered, because the choices that the Government has made so far


are making ordinary people pay the price and that is unacceptable. As


the honourable lady cleverly and rightly anticipated, the time limit


for speeches has been reduced to six minutes. Thank you Madam Deputy


Speaker. Can I just say how proud and delighted I am to be joined by


the new member for Stoke-on-Trent Central. He made a wonderful maiden


speech and I am grateful for every door I knocked on in the rain. We


can send him back now. What we heard last week was a budget breast, and


ears -- a budget breast of ideas. It offered no vision for the country's


future outside the EU and now offer hope for the potteries which I am so


proud to represent. The alleged support for health and social care


was little more than an empty gesture in the face of a crippling


financial crisis in the NHS. Madam Deputy Speaker, it prioritised the


vanity project of an out of touch Prime Minister in fixing the


struggling education system. This budget is timid, in the face of


unprecedented challenges. It is bold and only one respect, its choice of


victims. The Chancellor will no doubt be counting his blessings that


he had a ministerial car to flee the scene last week. I am sure the


cabbies of central London would have painted him a colourful picture of


what his announcement on national insurance is set to do to the


take-home pay. I am grateful to my honourable friend for giving way. I


can tell her that taxi drivers, as well as other self-employed workers,


cannot understand why their burden, as relatively low paid workers,


would go up, while there are taxes for the very rich is being cut. Is


that not the reason why there are so few members of the Government to


defend this terrible Budget? As the niece of a cab-driver, I should


declare an interest. It seems that the strivers his party claims to be


working for not striving hard enough. When Britain needs to


rebuild and rejuvenate its economy, the government Marco has chosen to


impose a tax on hard work and entrepreneurship. A tax on


aspiration. This was billed by many as the last pre-Brexit budget. Yet


the glaring omission in the Chancellor's plans was without any


clear vision of what Britain after Brexit might look like, and what


sort of investment and government support might be needed to get us


there. As for constituencies like mine, which voted overwhelmingly to


leave, there seems to be no consideration of the investment and


support needed to make sure that places like Stoke-on-Trent can


benefit and thrive from our new relationship with the world. There


was no clearer example of this than the Government's approach to


education and skills, the single biggest issue raised by all my


employers and educators when we discuss industrial strategy, another


phrase sorely missed from the budget. Schools in my constituency


are losing an average of ?400 per pupil and our city is crying out for


proper investment in skills and education. Instead, the Chancellor


is choking the life out of our public education system, while


pouring millions into a doomed experiment in selective education.


That lack of commitment to our wider education system is deeply


concerning. The single most important thing we can do to improve


the economy of my great city, and others, is to improve the skills of


the people who live and work there. It is not a lack of will holding


young people back. They are enthusiastic and keen to work. What


is missing is the support and investment to make sure they are


fulfilling their potential, learning the skills to succeed, gaining the


qualifications to prove it. Last week I visited the best primary


school in my city but they are already having to choose between


teachers and computers. That's why this is wrong. At the time when we


should be giving our communities the skills for the future, for the


government to focus on grammar system that will only benefit a


select few and focus on those more privileged backgrounds in stead of


providing the basics for every child. Madam Deputy Speaker, we need


to ensure that all our schools are properly funded and we have a robust


system of early intervention to support the most vulnerable families


right from the start. Which is why our primary schools and secondary


schools need investment, not vanity projects. If we are going to make


the best out of Brexit which we need to then we need to ensure that our


communities are ready to seize those opportunities and make sure there is


a workforce for the jobs of the future. We need a universal and


properly funded education system and ensure that all our young people are


supported to ensure they realise their potential. We need a better


deal for the next generation, not this ideological driven waste of


public funds. Thank you very much. Can I echo what has already been


said about the fantastic maiden speech. I went on a visit with him


and I know how committed he is to education and skills in his area.


That is the main thrust of my speech today. After nearly seven years in


government the cumulative effect of government policy on education and


skills is being felt by parents and teachers and has given rise to a


number of serious issues, each one of which should demand the attention


of ministers. School budgets falling for the first time in 20 years, a


teacher shortage crisis, huge rise in numbers requiring 400,000 new


school places. The biggest changes to GCSEs in a generation which many


people are unaware is coming. Primary assessment, with the results


coming. The introduction of more free childcare with insufficient


funding and serious failings in the school system with many of the


previous pet projects failing and closing. This was described as the


biggest revolution in decades. Any one of these should command the


undermanned at -- should command the attention of ministers. Instead they


want to impose further changes on the school system. There is the


reintroduction of grammar schools without the shred of evidence which


has shone a light on the record of grammar schools. This budget had


nothing to say about social mobility, closing the productivity


gap or creating the high skilled economy. Perhaps the government


would have been better spending more of their time setting out these


experiments. What has happened to them? Since 2010, the introduction


of the previous gimmicks, there have been huge problems and massive


wasted resources. Many more are on the brink. Whilst there are a few


excellent ones, even the man who introduced them admitted the


experiment has failed. Three in ten studio schools have closed or are


due to close as the analysis has found out. There are many more on


the brink of closure only one has reached the mark that they were set


out to do. The future is looking bleak for these institutions. Yet


the government is hell bent on creating more. One in five free


schools are in places where they weren't needed at all. The starving


of capital funds to existing schools continue to throw good money after


bad. This does nothing to deal with the real issues facing our schools


today. While we are awaiting the outcome, we heard the government are


hell on going ahead with the grammar school programme, which they are


calling selective free schools. The Secretary of State is so ashamed


that this policy she did not mention it. I reiterate, I see few members


defending this policy. I think we can infer that and the evidence is


very clear. These systems do not boost social mobility and in fact


they may widen the gap. As we know, the big challenge facing the system


is the long tail of underachievement. It's not about how


we better support the high achievers. The only argument put


forward by members opposite which was be treated earlier is the


already high achieving tiny number of children on free school meals who


are already high achieving do better than all the other children on free


school meals including the low achievers on everyone else. What a


joke of an argument that is. There's huge amounts of evidence going the


other way and maybe that's why addressing the usually pragmatic


college she was booed, which has never happened at that conference


before. It's why the government's social mobility commission, all the


secondary heads in Surrey and many others, and many members opposite,


have come out against these proposals. There is plenty the


government should be doing and I mentioned a few of them earlier.


Perhaps they should get back to these core issues rather than


creating more uncertainty and instability. Get on with doing


something about the major funding challenge. It's not about funding,


challenges, it is about levels being maintained. When the belts are being


tightened, they are being tightened even more for these schools and they


are losing out. Do something about the teacher shortages. For five


years in a row they've missed the tension. Do something about school


places. Work with local authorities. Do not put schools where they are


not needed. Get a grip of what is happening in our new curriculum.


There is absolute chaos there. If they really want to do something


about social mobility they should look at investing properly in


quality in the early years rather than trying to deliver a childcare


on the cheap. There's plenty of evidence for that and I'm happy to


discuss that with ministers if they want to have a real agenda for


social mobility. Thank you. Sometimes when you hear the


government MPs and the Prime Minister talk, you would think when


Labour was in power we did nothing for health, education, children,


homelessness and other vulnerable groups. Let me remind this house,


and take the members of parliament on a trip down memory lane. In 1997


when hospital waiting list for more than three years, when people


relying on hospital trolleys, we spent millions and millions of


pounds on repairing hospitals, investment in people, nurses,


doctors, hospital services, so that when we left in 2010 are NHS was one


of the most brilliant the Tories inherited, they are now destroying


it. On education we had the motto of education, education education, and


we follow that. I'm sure people will remember that tomorrow lies teachers


and rundown schools and all the extra funding we put in so when this


government takes credit for the fact that this is going so well it is


because of the investment we pretend from 1997. We took out half a


million children out of poverty and started a programme which helped


young people because if you really want to help young people, you need


to ensure that early education is good and the sure start programme


helped many families. We also have the educational maintenance


allowance. It helped many young people carry on, and many young


people are having to go to the job centre to sign on and it is one of


the most counter-productive measures. And yes, we did create an


academy. But since 2010 this government has been making many


outstanding schools in false academies Haixun 01 when many


ordinary schools are suffering and the funding formula has been


changed, affecting many schools in my constituency, so it would be far


better to spend money for most schools. I'm so disappointed the


Chancellor has not putting anything like this. Everybody except the


early years is important. Providers came to see me on a number of


occasions, and have spoken about the fact that the funding formula is


just not enough for them. Many of them have said that they are going


to go out of business because they cannot offer decent nursing


provision. I raise this question at Prime Minister's Questions. I said,


can we please reconsider the funding for nursery education. I'm afraid


this we are told that a lot of the cuts and austerity are about


balancing the book but this Conservative Government has borrowed


?1 trillion so our debt is higher than it has ever been. And let's not


have lectures opposite from the government that they are the or the


country that will get -- the party that will get the country going.


When the Labour government came in it was only 40%. A few years after


that it was 34% of the GDP. Again, that was not a requirement for


lectures. We propose a different future. It has done nothing for


people's pay or people who are low income.


We need to advocate a government that does not sit on the sidelines,


we don't need a laughing complacent Chancellor. For one who proudly she


in the mining heritage of Stoke-on-Trent, even though I do not


agree with everything he says, he is to be commended for his passionate


and excellent speech and his kind and honest words for his


predecessor. Stoke-on-Trent has a new champion and we wish him all the


best. Mile honourable friends have made


numerous salient points about the shortfalls in the Budget. A thinner


document than last year. A thinner document with thinner rule within. A


glaring issue, that of the extra ordinary misleading employment


many of the new proposals within the many of the new proposals within the


Budget. The Chancellor has waned that 2.7 million more people are, I


quote, enjoying the security and dignity of work than in 2010. I


cannot fathom how they can describe the gauge economy that has been


filled since 2010 with zero hours contracts, temporary work that is


insecure, and people are self-employed through necessity,


that is dignified. The working conditions are far less thing about


than those faced a decade ago. Many of these workers face the loss of


the minimum remaining employment rights that have been secured


through the EU by the coming hard Tory Brexit. The Chancellor has


stated he does not want to saddle the next generation with


ever-increasing debt. I would suggest that he may consider taking


a closer look at the funding allocated to the DWP's work


programme. Since 2011, more than ?1 billion has been spent on attachment


sustainment payments all of which sustainment payments all of which


are nice sounding euphemisms. The Government hasn't really been paying


of employers. Offer it large chain reads fashion retailers to stack


shelves and work on sales. -- tills. This also stagnates productivity. It


hardly seems a stretch to suggest that if the ?1 billion was used to


invest rather than AIDS the Government is budging if I miss the


distance, productivity may be higher. I would also -- a aid the


Government. This may be the case for a wealthy constituents in the City


of London, but it is not the case for builders, joiners, electricians


and other trades I have spoken to in my constituency and all over


Scotland. On the 27th of October 2015, the honourable member for


South West that Mac... National Insurance conjuration stated, I


remind the committee of the purpose to emphasise the commitment not to


increase National Insurance contribution rate in the course of


the parliament. What does he think went wrong? It appears that word is


very seldom kept in this place. These people often do jobs for the


same companies for years on end. These copies will not hire them as


regular employees due to the cost of providing them with basic employee


benefits. This means they do not have maternity, activity or sick


leave paid holidays. Nor the leave paid holidays. Nor the


security of knowing whether they will employed in one month. The


insinuation by the Chancellor that these individuals alike to go off


all of these benefits for the sake of saving a small percentage of the


income of National Insurance payments is absurd and offensive. If


the Chancellor would like to address the gap in revenue due to the


growing trend of several comic, I would suggest a fairer and more


effective way would be to tackle those companies who have only hired


workers, self-employed contractors to up -- avoid paying if Poyet


benefits rather than claiming those who are subjected to be unfair


practices. The Chancellor has ventured -- presented another Budget


claiming working people for the economic problems created by the


London centric elite. Offers nothing new to address the big hitting


problems. Nor does it protect working people from the fallout from


the hard Tory Brexit. So much for caring conservative -- conservatism.


After seven years of economic failure, missed deficit reduction


targets, failing public services, an explosion of food banks supporting


working people, for this, my expectations for this Conservative


Budget were already low. Madame Deputy Speaker, have we ever had a


Budget lacking in substance are much? It is clear for the earlier


debates this afternoon that the Government does not have a clue what


it wants from Brexit and what it will cost. Eliminating the deficit


by 2015 used to be the overriding goal. Now, the target has been


dumped and public debt is climbing to almost ?2 trillion. Is this...


Our public services have paid the price of the failure. Waiting lists


in the NHS are rising. Our social care system is facing a funding back


Cole. -- black hole. Spending has gone down in real terms by a faith


despite rising demand. There are 400 fewer police officers in the


Cleveland area keeping our community say. We will be losing a whopping


?7.8 million by 2020, ?422 per pupil in one of the most deprived areas in


the country. As my honourable friend from Huddersfield said, while


primary schools are in the top ten, secondary schools need more support.


The newly departed Michael has when Askew was closed and our


economy has been battered, leaving us with 3000 job losses and a youth


an appointment rate higher than national average, she uses it as an


investment to invest not snuff out potential. With lost jobs and


falling living standards, unemployment in the Tees Valley has


been above 10%. Posterity has hit many families. 2000 people hit by


the Belgian tax to unfair sanctions on tax credits. Wages are set to


rise much more slowly than expected over four years. Families are


turning to credit to make ends meet. House of debt up by 110 billion by


20 21. What Teessiders really needed was investment in infrastructure,


industry and skills to give the local economy the boost it needs. I


believe that our region despite the difficulties of the last few years


is on the verge of a renaissance. Mineral and energy cheap power is


investing. But this investment will not benefit local people unless


there is a revolution in skills and we are able to capitalise on


opportunities. The Chancellor did not take action to address the


unfairness that is holding areas like my own back. The north-east


continues to reside on regional investment, funding for


infrastructure and skills to benefit industry of the future. No mention


of the Northern powered House. -- Northern Powerhouse. The future of


our economic resilience will depend on the success of small to medium


size businesses. Lots of businesses have talked about the... The


Chancellor's measures to soften the burden are welcome but not enough.


National Insurance contributions will now rise despite a manifesto


promise by the Tories not to do so. Many of the X the workers are


self-employed. With the Government's funding at imploring them to do so


and they will be hit. It was a paper thin, brittle Budget coming after


posterity. I have... It was a privilege to follow my


honourable friend the Member for breath card. I am here today... A


member of Stoke-on-Trent Central. I member of Stoke-on-Trent Central. I


know he will be a great asset to us. I was interested to hear the


Secretary of State discussing the Secretary of State discussing the


fact that the Budget was on International women 's. That made it


a greater insult, the Chancellor did not give work to the Waspi women


campaigning for fairness. They were born in the 19... They got not one


word from this Chancellor. Like many word from this Chancellor. Like many


members last week, I met with a delegation of local woman affected


by the changes of the state pension law. Women came down from many areas


in my constituency. These women, there are more than 3 million across


our country, they are not political militants. They do not oppose the


pension age, they do not want the H2. To go down to 60. I think it is


shameful that the Government chose not to this on to them. Budgets are


about choices. I can't accept that when the Government agrees to ?17


billion of corporation tax cuts, ?2.8 billion in inheritance tax


cuts, and many other items, they put those above a modest bridging


support for these women. I was interested in the figures


inheritance tax, the Member for inheritance tax, the Member for


Leeds West recently wrote an Leeds West recently wrote an


excellent article on this. I read that the proportion of Houses sold


for ?65,000 or more in my constituency in 2015 and 2016 was


only 15. That is 0.9% of all total House sales. At a time when the


total number of Houses sold in the period was 1700. The average sold


price was ?140,000. In June 2016. I wish there was 15 people -- I wish


them well indeed. I don't think they deserve a tax cut to enjoy their


properties. Rather then this extravagant change to inheritance


and cut to corporation tax, the Government should be on the side of


the small business person, the self-employed. How extraordinary


that this is the Conservative party that has broken its promise to the


plumber, the cabbie in Cardiff and even, indeed, the grocer from


Grantham. A Conservative Government that is charging grocers from


Grantham more. How extraordinary! It is a trade-off, being self-employed


means the parental leave, no sick pay. No holiday pay. Difficulty


getting mortgages. It is a decent consensus. That height to class for


National Insurance contributions has broken the consensus that we in this


country has believed in it for years. -- class four contributions.


The farmers union of Wales, I hope they will consider what they have to


say. This is a consequence in a rural amenities. The managing


director, Alan Davies, asked the question last week, why is it that


tax is being increased for those hard working individuals, some of


whom only make a profit just over ?8,000? While at the same time


Corporation tax is falling. One of Wales' office minister says there


should be an apology to those who read the Conservative manifesto. I


would rather that the Government reversed their tax hike and scrap


the tax. We remember the Tories' 20 shelf that -- 2012... War on the


humble Cornish pasty, caravanners, it is high time that this Government


listen to the voice of the honest people in our community, the


entrepreneurs, it is high time that the Government listen to the women


who have fought so hard right through the lives and have


contributed so much to society. It is time this Government acted in the


committees, rural, suburban and committees, rural, suburban and


urban, and recognise that what must happen now, they must restore


fairness, do a U-turn on this ridiculous tax hike for 75 people.


They must give some decent team to the people in this country now. --


decency. Thank you for calling me in this


important debate. It is a pleasure to follow the honourable lady. A


fine constituency in north Wales, one I know particularly well. She


will know how closely those MPs, those of us in Cheshire, work with


her and her colleagues in north Wales to look at the economic


benefits that working together, England in Cheshire and north Wales


for the benefit of all our constituents. I would like to think


this has come some way to enable us to raise tax and invest in


infrastructure that benefits those cross-border constituents. Against a


backdrop of global uncertainty, as we start our negotiations to exit


the European Union, this budget takes forward our plan to plan a


brighter future for Britain. Nine years ago, it is the UK was one of


the worst prepared economies to feed the financial crisis. Today the UK


is one of the best prepared. The forecast says the UK economy will


grow by 4% in 2017, revised from 1.4% forecast last November. Growing


faster than every major economy in Europe, except Germany. Any families


sitting in the kitchen table will tell you cannot keep spending more


than you bring in. The same holds true for Government. There is no


magic money tree. Britain has a debt of nearly 1.7 trillion, almost


62,000 for every household in the country. We must never forget that


under Labour ?1 in every ?4 was spent by the Government was


borrowed. I will give way. Does he agree with me that it behoves the


opposition to oppose any spending reduction including any welfare


spending reduction over the last ten years and yet also make uncosted


promises amounting to ?63 billion, completely uncosted. Thank you. He


is absolutely right. During the last parliament, the opposed every single


reform that this preview Government did. And the current element has


made. It is called austerity on the other side, I call it living within


1's means. You have to make those very difficult decisions. A final


point of milk over to the final -- the other gentleman. In the


counterproposals from the members opposite, they have forgotten about


the mistakes in the past. He made that bizarre analogy of comparing


the country with a family and balancing one's books. When you are


sitting around the dinner table, can he print money? That analogy is


completely and utterly defunct. I didn't catch the last word of the


honourable gentleman. I used that analogy when it comes to economics.


We had home economics when I was at school. You had to make very


difficult decisions at home. I was merely making that point that we all


have difficult decisions to make, but that analogy with families


applies to families across the country. Indeed, it also applies to


Government. I am sorry the honourable gentleman from the SNP


doesn't feel that is a good analogy. I will wait to hear him speak later


and comment on his speech. I welcome... To carry on the


Government's commitment to take the country's lowest earners out of tax


altogether by raising the allowance of 11 and a half thousand pounds.


When I sat on the work and pensions select committee, the whole point of


the Government's mantra was to make work pay and I believe that is the


right course of action to take. If I may, I wish to come to a subject


which is very close to my heart. I declare an interest, I am a German


of the all party beer group. As Chairman, I welcome the ?1000 relief


for pubs with a readable value of less than ?100,000 which will


benefit 9% of pubs. I also welcome the discretionary fund made to local


authorities who can award businesses based on their area. However, I am


somewhat disappointed by the inflationary rise in beer duty,


Puget now 43% higher than it was a decade ago. 13 times higher than in


Germany and significantly higher than the major brewing neighbours


with in Europe. Although the Government has a great track record


of three reductions in beer duty, duty frees and the removal of the


year duty escalator. While I welcome the introduction of duty-bound to


target high ABV White ciders and encourage responsible drinking, it


is important to remember that 70% of drinks bought in pubs are indeed


beer. The current bracket of reduced rate beer sits at 1.2 to 2.2% ABV.


Current HMI si demonstrates that in six years since a policy was


introduced, point Dawie van der Walt 0.1% drinks at ABV beer. I know they


want to split the bearded unit into two parts. -- beer duty. They have


much less alcohol than the UK average and are highly drinkable to


UK consumers. However, this is something that we can work together


on over the coming months to encourage a broader selection of


lower strength beers to become part of the nine in the UK drinking


culture and I will be encouraging the industry to step up to the plate


with lower strength beers that can be drunk and enjoyed in the great


British pub. This Government has a plan to build an economy that works


for everyone and this budget continues with the plan by building


on the foundation of our fundamental economic strength. It is make sure


our economy remains strong so we can properly fund our public services,


helps ordinary working families make ends meet and makes clear that


Britain is open for business. Thank you, Madam Deputy Speaker. It is a


pleasure to follow the honourable member. I fully highlighted in the


second half of his speech very well the importance of our community


pubs. It is also a pleasure to speak in the debate in which my honourable


friend the member for Stoke Central made his quite superb maiden speech.


Someone once said of the then Prime Minister that he had an absolute


genius forbidding flamboyant labels on empty luggage. I am afraid in


this budget we have got plenty of empty luggage and even the


flamboyant labels have now gone. There was certainly no vision in the


budget for what post Brexit Britain should look like. Neither was there


anything in the budget about tackling some of the very


fundamental problems that our economy faces over the next two


years. And nowhere is that better illustrated than the approach that


has been taken to being self-employed in this country. There


are 4.6 million self-employed people in the UK today. Of course, I am


completely opposed to those unscrupulous employers who push


people into a self-employed status to avoid the duties of them being


employed. But the reality is that there are millions of people who are


self-employed who have chosen to be so, who have the flexibility that


that brings. But there has always been a trade-off. Self-employed


people don't have the same access to pensions, they don't have the same


access to our social security system and having been self-employed for


many years myself, I also know they don't have absolute certainty over


income. They don't know how much money is going to comment week to


week. The truly answer to that, it appears, is to hammer them on their


national insurance contributions, this rise in the class for


contribution. It is a breach of the manifesto pledge. I'm not a regular


visitor to conservatives.com, but I can tell you that you can get a PDF


version of the 2015 manifesto and it is there on page five under the


headline while you grew older in promising not to raise income tax,


VAT on national insurance. It is a flagrant breach of that manifesto


promise. It is also short-sighted. What we should be seeking to do is


looking at policies solutions in the long-time for how these 4.6 million


people, who take -- you are great entrepreneurs can actually access


our social security system and can access appropriate pensions. How


must the self-employed field by their treatment under this Tory


Government? We all know the Prime Minister likes to read the brief


first, she likes to consider your position, with their opinions. What


did she say on the self-employed bat self-employed? We are eroding our


tax benefit. What is that today millions of self-employed people in


this country? I certainly agreed with the Chancellorwords about


parity of esteem between vocational and academic qualifications and the


idea of fee levels. The problem was when I was hearing him speaking, I


was reminded of somebody else. I was struck to go and look at who this


actually was, someone who promised new university technical colleges,


someone who promised looking at vocational training right across the


board. What do I discover? It was actually the honourable member, the


previous Chancellor, speaking on the Andrew Marshall in 20 11. We can be


sceptical I think of the ability of Tory chancellors to deliver on


vocational training, given that almost the same thing was said six


years ago. We also have to look at the overall impact of this budget. I


would commend to ministers opposite a document produced by the


resolution foundation, appropriately called back to the 1980s, it is the


study of what happens to working age incomes over the next four years as


a consequence of Conservative policies. What does it tell us? That


the lowest quarter of incomes are going to be five to 15% worse off in


the next four years, what happens to be going to be for two 5% better off


over the next four years. Whilst we live, Mr Speaker, in an age of great


political uncertainty in many ways, there are some things that are still


absolutely certain. What is still flows downhill by the easiest route,


the sun will rise tomorrow and Tory Government always make the rich


richer and the poor poorer. That is precisely what this budget does.


Thank you, Mr Speaker. This budget was more about what the Chancellor


didn't see them what he did. It's incredible that the consequences of


us leaving the EU, the biggest cause of uncertainty and the biggest


threat to our economic well-being have got no significant measure tile


in the budget and that fact alone is enough to render the budget a


failure. It wasn't the only failure. Most chancellors get to see good


headlines the next morning. But not so spreadsheet Phil as the Right


honourable gentleman likes to be known. The way that the Prime


Minister, her Chancellor and the close allies, ministerial aides and


senior sources have been denouncing each other over the weekend in the


most rigid brewers to do times. Apart from the considerable


entertainment value of all this briefing and counter briefing which


shows the dysfunction at the heart of this blundering fractures divided


Government, I must say "aye" find it astonishing, Mr Speaker, that no one


in the entire cabinet spotted the howling broken election promise at


the heart of this budget Bobby Dazzler briefed him on his plans.


They have all been whingeing to the newspapers... But the tangled and


flag it up. There has been increased that Mango increased the entire


graduate of Parliament. Yet none of them noticed. I wouldn't have


expected that we had forgotten about it, but apparently the dead all


managed to put it right out of their minds. It shows just how cynical the


Tory Government is, that the entire Cabinet fails to remember their main


election promise with him. Thanks to these coalition


governments, and the governments we now have, there has been a fall, and


is due to fall by a further 6.5%. I have received from the head of the


governing body at a college in my constituency spells out the reality


of the financial pressures they are under. Increases in the salary bill,


higher pensions, higher national insurance contributions, the removal


of the education and support grant, the apprentice levy, payable from


April, a loss in per capita sixth form funding. The college has


reduced its leadership team and their salaries, and has six teaching


posts unfilled. They say they are extremely concerned about the


potential impact of the forthcoming National funding formula. The impact


of this is likely to make it impossible the country can remain


financially stable and this will have a detrimental effect upon the


provision for people is a city which has among the highest levels of


deprivation in the UK. This is a popular oversubscribed school. I


have written to the Secretary of State about this but I have yet to


receive a reply. It is not the only skill in my constituency with these


problems. This is a disaster for our schools, but the budget has made it


worse when it could have made it better. In divisive and answers


measures, the Government has set aside ?1 trillion and the Prime


Minister's back to the 1950s Grammar School vanity project and have


agreed to pay transport costs for poorer pupils but only those who


attend selective schools. The young people in my constituency can no


longer study for academic A-levels without leaving the borough and to


get no such help, even though Is when I host the Minister for the


school system, Lord Nash, what assistance the Government could


order to ensure studying for A-levels could happen. It would be


unfair, he said, to offer free jazz was too one area and not others. --


free transport. A divisive, selective grammar school. How


typically Tory. Children who want to study A-levels have been given


nothing because he was to recreate the 1950s grammar school myth. Money


needs to be into building all our schools, employing 36,000 more


teachers, and more teaching assistants. After seven years of Lib


Dems, Tories and Tories. Crisis again with pass rates going down,


teachers fleeing the profession. It has set about doing even more damage


want to focus on the need to put want to focus on the need to put


skills and jobs in our country, especially in manufacturing,


following the Budget. This is pertinent as we begin the process of


leaving the EU. As a listening exercise I conducted, it is telling


that Nissan featured dominantly. Last week is likewise it was a


perfect opportunity for the Chancellor to lay the foundations


for strong economic growth, resilient to any storms we may


weather during the EU negotiations. Sadly, we were left wanting. The


announcement we did get an skills did not go far enough. They must be


placed within the context of the Government's wide approach to


education and skills. Since 2010, we have seen the further education


Budget cuts by 14% in real terms. This is a cash reduction from 3.18


million in 2011, two two point nine 4 billion. Depleted by 54%. This


negligence approach by Government has not scuppered the innovative


work in my constituency by great employers. Last Friday, I was


honoured to open a new training Academy which will help to boost the


skills and our local workforce by giving apprenticeship opportunities.


It goes without saying that manufacturing is about it with it


the north-east. We have a country's makers and builders. What I believe


to be the innate talent of the people in our region, the skills we


inherently have within hours to manufacture with high-quality and


high productivity. My constituency is what I like to call the


Manufacturing hub of our region. Leading the country with BAE


Systems, Nissan, to name a few. All based on my constituency. The


manufacturing presence will only be strengthened by the creation of the


eye a M, the entrance -- team1-mac. -- IAM. Manufacturers in my


constituency, large down to small and medium, Washington Components


among others, depend upon the Government strengthening their


approach to skills and jobs. This is especially important with Brexit on


the horizon. There is one way I think ministers could help bolster


manufacturing in not only the North East but also across the country,


that is true catapults. I am not talking about ancient war machines,


but a network of world leading centre is designed to transform the


specific areas and help future specific areas and help future


economic growth. There have been a number of catapults across the


country. Looking at them, none for materials. No support for the


innovation and development of materials such as steel, ceramics,


glass and plastic. All of which are crucial to the dominance automotive


sector in Sunderland. If we were to see a catapults for materials like


the industry supported proposal for the materials processing Institute


in Redcar that's received cross-party endorsement in January


from the... This could have a positive impact on the whole of the


manufacturing industry. It would, however, especially help the Nissan


supply chain, that they said needs repowering. I appreciate the mention


of the fantastic Institute. Swansea is predicted to receive ?80 million


for a steal signed centre which would almost directly duplicate the


work happening in the... Redcar. I don't want to take anything away


from Wales. Especially colleagues from Wales in the Chamber, but


duplication is not go to be good, especially when there is so little


funding around. It doesn't make any sense to duplicate. We definitely


don't want to take any support away from Nissan. I am pleased my


honourable friend made that point was that currently, only a minority


of parts used to build Nissan cars are made here in the UK. Do a


38,000... Drew a 38,000 strong supply chain workforce around the UK


with 27,000 of those jobs based in the north-east. What an exciting


constituency she represents. My understanding one of the reasons why


Nissan decided to stay in her constituency is because of the


cluster of battery technology and technology countries. Is that true?


Yes. I am pleased he has made that point. The electric battery


technology is going from strength to strength. I was pleased to see that


there was an announcement with regards to electric vehicles and


battery technology in the Budget. However, we currently do see a


predicament of looming on the horizon. As we begin to leave the


EU. That is the WTO tariffs. Ministers have said we will strike a


deal which means we do not half to deal which means we do not half to


get rid of the WTO 10% tariffs. A document showing the Prime


Minister's willingness to go back on these terms regardless of the


economic impact. Reiterated by the Foreign Secretary on TV all over the


weekend also. This would be catastrophic, not only for the


country but from my constituency and the businesses that was take Nissan.


Falling back onto W T O tariffs and crashing out of the customs union


would cause the least -- cause delays. And also an issue for


overseeing parts used to build the car is would have to be reduced to


meet prewritten -- rules of origin. There would need to be a 50% local


content to meet rules of origin and the cast is British made. This could


prove a major problem for Nissan. This is where the materials


catapults comes into play. Not only would this reinvigorate innovation


mitigate issues in terms of the mitigate issues in terms of the


tariffs on manufactured. I cannot make this point strongly enough,


this catalogue could also mean this catalogue could also mean


potential job growth. If we take the case of adjusting overseas content


in this and cars, this could significantly boost the UK's supply


chain and create tens of thousands of new UK jobs. This could seriously


transform the manufacturing sector in the UK. Catapults could help in


part achieve this resilience that they have been talking about. I hope


the Government will listen and look again at the potential of a


materials catapults. I want to begin by putting this Budget in context


for my constituents. We have a Government that has borrowed more in


seven years down the last Labour Government did in 13. The deficit we


were told would be gone is still there. The country is just about to


embark on the most support negotiations since the end of the


Second World War. The Chancellor barely mentions Brexit. The disabled


employment are to have their incomes employment are to have their incomes


cuts by close to one third next month. Children who are an lucky


enough to be the third child in a struggling family will suffer as the


withdrawal of child tax credit which is another 600,000 children into


poverty. Many families are just not managing. All they have to look


forward to is years of austerity stretching far into the 20 20ths. It


is OK, we don't need to worry because inheritance tax is to be


reduced. Mr Speaker, I worry if the Chancellor knows how many people in


my constituency are likely to benefit from the cutting inheritance


tax. Last year, it would have been six. This year, it is eight. Not


even double figures. Mr Speaker, it is obscene to take from the


disabled, from those struggling to make ends meet, to give to the


richest households in the land. Turning to some of the announcements


made on Budget day, firstly considering the increased National


Insurance for the self-employed, these changes to National Insurance


contributions for the self-employed taking alongside the cut in


corporation tax tell my constituents all they need to know about this


small business and reduce costs for small business and reduce costs for


big business. There are over 4000 self-employed people in my


constituency and they will all be worse off despite the fact that the


2015 Conservative manifesto promised that National Insurance


contributions would not be increased. There can be no


justification for any of this. Mr Speaker, if the Government was


serious about tackling the deficit, why is it cutting taxes for the


richest? By 2022, cuts for the banking, capital gains tax,


corporation tax will have cost the taxpayer another ?70 billion. Mr


Speaker, I repeat. It is obscene. Turning to the issue of social care,


in the light of the cost of tax cuts, no wonder there is no money


for adequate social care. Depriving all people of the care they need is


causing widespread misery. It is placing additional pressure on an


should be made to... He offered only should be made to... He offered only


2 billion for the next three years. Only giving the care centre only


half of what it needs. Since 2010, the Government has cut 4.2 billion


from social care budgets. My constituents might not have been


aware of the figures, but they know what they see with their own eyes.


They understand that the Government takes with two cans and gives back


with one. Quite frankly, they are not impressed. -- two hands.


Finally, the Government was my Finally, the Government was my


proposal to spend millions of pounds to create new gamma schools --


grammar schools to the detriment of current schools. Funding is set to


be cut here by ?400 per pupil. For some so much for giving all children


in education. Subjects dropped from the curriculum, special educational


needs and disabilities losing vital support. Staff vacancy left unfilled


or cut altogether. Introduction of armour skills will not help schools


in Burnley. Nor do anything for social mobility. In spite of Theresa


May's grand promises, this Budget and Government has once again failed


to deliver for my constituents. Mr Speaker, there is much I could say


about the budgets last week, but given tankers don't I will limit my


remarks to the specific topic of education and skills. In recent


weeks, there have been protests in my constituency, as there have been


about cuts to school budgets across the country. Parents are talking


about fewer teachers and support staff, reduced curriculums and fewer


opportunities for their children. What is good news did last week's


Budget contained for those concerns mums and dads? The answer is very


little. Ministers are ramped up their grammar school rhetoric, made


lots of noise about being on the side of aspiration and hoped that no


one would notice that they don't have any real solutions for the


schools which are struggling most today. The Government buys make


education policy is nothing more than an aspirational Mirage. ?320


million allocated for up to 140 new free schools, 30 of which will be


opened by September 20 20. Some of which could be grammars. ?320


million may sound like a pot of money, but in the grand scheme of


things it is not. The building schools for the future programme in


Lewisham, which rebuilt nine secondary schools and two special


schools, was a ?285 million programme. That is one brother, one


city, 285 million. Within the budget allocation for


free schools, is she aware there are possibilities there for a university


technical colleges which will enable constituencies like mine to go ahead


with the proposal for a new health university technical College which


will help the huge number of young people work in the NHS in the


future. Do she think that's constructive? I am grateful. I am


not sure whether he was in the chamber earlier for the speech made


by the former Shadow Education Secretary, but she pointed out some


of the evidence around UTC 's is quite dubious at best. I was talking


about the comparative size of the budget for the new grammar schools


and I was pointing out that in Lewisham, the building schools for


the future programme was ?285 million to rebuild when the budget


for the whole country, with regard to grammar schools, is 320 million.


The revelation -- revelation that the Government speak about in


education is really... They want to bring the wrong schools in the wrong


places and have the wrong priorities. I don't think a penny of


extra money should be spent on new grammar schools. I have read the


research which so is there is no aggregate improvement in outcomes in


areas which operate selection and I have seen the impact of selection in


my own family. My own mum, as bright and capable as anyone in this


chamber, was told when she was 11 she wasn't good enough, she was a


slow learner and she was not academic. She believes that to this


day, Mr Speaker. I strongly believe in our comprehensive system, teach


children from different backgrounds and different faiths with different


abilities in the same school. Ensure that young people get to mix with


others who aren't exactly the same as them. The truth is, this


Government isn't interested in that, they want to play politics instead


of addressing real problems. It doesn't matter what they say about


paying for transport to grammars, or fiddling with entrance exams, the


proposals cream of the lucky few at the expense of the majority. To rub


salt into the wind, Mr Speaker, the I simply failing to address the


problems in some of the country's worst schools and the loop to


exacerbate the problem there with their new funding formula. The earth


still pursuing an academy strategy which is slowly falling apart. --


The Artist L. Lewisham has the worst performing secondary schools of any


borough in London. The academies in my constituency are struggling. They


have not delivered the soaring GCSE results that were promised and they


have a mixed record on discipline. That is not the worst of it. At a


certain school, the staff and pupils have been left in a permanent state


of limbo. An Academy order has been issued following the imposition of


an interim executive board, but no academy sponsor seems interested in


taking the school on. This has been dragging on for over two years. What


is the Government's answer to schools like this? What is their


answer to the parents who ask me whether the school is one of the


many so-called orphans or Untouchables goes that the Read


about in the papers from which Academy sponsors cannot be found? It


is an absolute disgrace, Mr Speaker. If you can't identify an academy


sponsor, we invoke the Academy order and put in place a tailored package


of support for the school. Focus on what is going on inside the


classroom and not the sign outside the school gates. Don't blame the


local authorities either. Councils have been emasculated by central


Government in recent years, stripped of resources, leading to the last of


school improvement services, stripped of the ability to open new


skills of their choosing, and stripped of any real power to sort


things out when things go wrong. I am fed up of listening to ministers


talk about grammar schools when they have no answer for schools like


this. I don't want teachers to be asking me why the PTA is raising


money for photo copying paper and not for the luxuries that they use


to raise money for. And I don't see how anything in this Government's


budget and anything that they are doing in education at the moment


will equip all children with these skills, knowledge and confidence


that is needed to succeed in this increasingly competitive, complex


and fast moving world we now live in. Thank you, Mr Speaker. I would


like to apologise for missing business questions earlier today. I


would like to focus on a couple of issues. First of all the Scottish


whiskey industry. The increases in the national insurance contributions


to be self-employed. Let me declare an interest as the Treasurer for the


all-party group on Scotch whiskey, a position which has offered me the


opportunity to establish a close working relationship with this vital


industry which is very local in the West Dunbartonshire. As the member


for West Dunbartonshire, a constituency home to two well-known


distilleries, Loch Lomond being one, the have seen massive investment in


recent months. In a bottling plant, is there are very strong


reservations over the impact of the Government's decision to increase


excise duty on spirits by 3.9%. This money grab has been described by


Loch Lomond distillery as the spectacularly poor decision by the


Chancellor of the Exchequer and by the Scottish whiskey association as


a major blow to the industry, which will undermine the progress that the


industry has made in recent years. I would urge the Chancellor to use the


opportunity to carry out an urgent review of the UK's alcohol taxation


system, to give this industry, as described by the Prime Minister only


a week ago, as a truly Scottish and British and the world's pre-eminent


spirit, and the support it requires to remain competitive, it is vitally


important in this global market. For the ill thought out increase in


excise duty to be potentially disastrous impact on self-employed


increase in class for national insurance conjure visions by nearly


11% over the next two years, in my constituency the local community and


economy has built a very strong foundation 's small businesses and


have serious concerns. Over the long-term impact and pressure that


this increase will have on small businesses, specifically. The


Federation for small business in Scotland have said to my office and


voice concerns the proposed policy instated and have said that the risk


that the self-employed face makes them fundamentally different to


employ use. This is why the proposed national insurance tax grab on the


group is an absolute kit in the teeth. Just at a time when we need


to create more entrepreneurs, not fewer. The fact that the Chancellor


of the Exchequer's own benches do not support this policy, we hear


them in the lobbies of the time, sends a strong message to the


Chancellor and to the Treasury that the business community must be


understood and consulted before any drastic changes must be made. There


is still time for the Chancellor to see sense and gives small business


the respect and support they deserve, Mr Speaker, to feel to do


so would be a dereliction of duty and a show of no confidence in those


who ensure the economy is built on a strong base. Finally, what I see is


an utter failure even to mention the women in this budget. It shows the


Treasury has failed to grasp the reality faced by women born in the


1950s. Poverty, destitution and a political state unwilling, not


unable, but unwilling to offer them a quality in the 21st century. As


the SNP spokesperson for industrial strategy, can I add my ad management


to him missing questions this morning. --


I wanted to touch in part on national insurance contributions.


This was dressed up as something a little bit different, a bit bland,


and it really was bland. There are some bits in it but just really


didn't ring true. The Chancellor seem to think that he and his budget


the process we have been going through and through Tory austerity


has not been felt most strongly, and those who do not have the means to


beat it. And, to a degree, that may be true. If you look at it in a very


narrow sense, the top 10% of earners when you take into account all


things considered, have borne a slightly greater part of that...


What needs to be boring, I suppose. But the lowest three have Pawnee


similar percentage decline in their income as a result of this


Government's policies. Whilst it is easy to see that the top have had


the greatest hit, the reality is that if you are in those bottom


three, that 1.2% fall on your income will mean considerably more to you


than a will to somebody in the top 10%. The Chancellor with as a badge


of pride in his budget speech that as a result of this changes we have


made since 2010, the top 1% of income taxpayers now pay 27% of all


income tax. Mr Speaker, that is not the indication of a fairer society.


That is the very opposite and demonstrates we live in an


incredibly unfair society, for 27% of income taxes paid by 1% of the


population. That is because the are an unjustifiably more than the rest


of the population, that is not a badge of honour, that should be a


badge of shame to this Government. We have heard talk around about how


this Government wants to use technical education and reforms to


the budget to make entrepreneurship the heart of the British economy and


to have technical skills at the heart of it. Yet, the single key


announcement as part of this budget has been the change in terms of


national insurance contributions for the self-employed. Those are the


entrepreneurs, those are the folks with the technical skills that we


need in our economy. As we have heard from member after mentally,


those people do not enjoy the same benefits and protections that those


in and employed position that we enjoy. That is why they deserve to


have a differential in terms of their national insurance


contributions. To address this up as anything other than a naked tax grab


is to be entirely disingenuous. This will not help our economy, it is


coming at precisely the worst time to do so, and it must be not just


stopped, but cancelled entirely. For me, Mr Speaker, the most


disappointing part of this budget has been in terms of its utter


silence on the energy challenges that we as a country face. Whether


it be the fact there was next to nothing said renewables, nothing


about how we decarbonise our economy, nothing about how we tap


the massive potential that we have in Scotland, particularly in a rural


communities, how we get CFT is for the island communities, how we tap


the massive potential of our tidal streams. We heard nothing about how


we will see implementation of carbon capture and storage that we will


need if you are going to be able to afford to meet both any financial


sense and actually in a technical sense our carbon budgets that we


have agreed at Parliament. We also have... I won't, there are others.


Thank you. We are also pushing ahead with the privatisation of the green


investment at precisely the wrong time. As part of this, I hope the


Government will reflect upon the challenges that they face and cancel


that sale. Oil and gas, something that has raised its head, given the


changes in the Scottish political debate. In 2014, the then Prime


Minister promised Scotland a ?200 billion oil bonanza, if we voted no.


He told us that that industry relied upon the broad shoulders of this UK.


Those shoulders have barely shrugged in defence of the 65,000 people,


many of whom are in my constituency and lost their job well they have


been asleep at the wheel. I and my party will take no lectures from


folks over there on the oil and gas industry. They have had an absolute


dereliction of duty. This budget had the opportunity to right that wrong.


What did they do? Did they come forward with the explanation


incentives that the industry needs? No, they did not. We simply reheated


a previous commitment from the last budget and said that we will set up


a discussion group. Mr Speaker, that frankly is not good enough. For


people are losing their jobs, you do not sit down and have a chat over a


cup of tea. In an independent Scotland, it would have undoubtedly


acted, swiftly, decisively and would have saved these people's jobs.


Is all great but it's a great policy statements made, there is a vision.


That vision is backed by policy. Today's the theme of the Budget


debate is education. We had the Secretary of state speak at great


length about one of the great problems that has beset the


education system in our country for decades, the link between social


background and educational attainment. Of course, it is one


thing to talk about it, and another to actually address that with


policies. That will work. I think, for most of us, to see the


Government to return to the failed policies of the past, to try to


address that, I think was a great mistake. To say that the issue of


social backgrounds and educational attainment will actually be solved


by the return of grammar schools, which may have benefited if you, but


did to at the vast expense of the did to at the vast expense of the


majority of the young people in an area, is something totally and


utterly unacceptable. The Government itself, it has had problems with its


own backbenchers in terms of trying to put forward that particular


policy. I say to the Government, yes, we all agree with tackling


educational attainment and social background, but not like a return to


selective education. To essentially what will be the 11 plus. Let me


also say that it is clear that the Treasury Minister is at the Treasury


bench there, midget -- ministers went to the Treasury and said, the


National Audit Office is saying there will be a ?3 billion cut. A


real terms cut in our Budget by 2020. That is not defensible. I say


to the Conservative MPs, they will not have on their leaflets all of


the cuts that will be to their own the cuts that will be to their own


skills. Generally, I will write to the Minister about this, as though


it somehow happens without Government decision. The education


Department have failed in their attempt to get the Treasury to stay


dump up more money to pay for our dump up more money to pay for our


schools. The consequences are for virtue every school in the country,


a reduction of funding. For large numbers of teachers, large numbers


of them will be made redundant or not the employed. That is the


reality of the Government's policy with respect to education. My own


constituency by 2020 will see cuts of ?5.6 million in real terms. The


equivalent of 139 teachers. In Nottinghamshire, that accounts to


nearly ?40 million worth of cuts. The local Conservative candidates


those elections somehow pretend it those elections somehow pretend it


has nothing to do with them and object when we point out it is their


own Government that is doing it. We also say that we also face a crisis


with respected teacher recruitment and retention. At the heart of any


policy to raise attainment in some of our most difficult schools, some


of our schools where we wanted that the timid to be raised, at the heart


of that is good teaching and good headteachers. That is absolutely


fundamental to it. Every single policy over the last few years until


fairly recently has recognised that and try to make sure that happens.


And yet, we see teacher recruitment and retention but under threat. In


certain subjects, the inability of schools to recruit to teaching


specialists and in some circumstances some schools actually


reflect on whether they have enough staff to ensure whether they can


deliver a full regular over a full number of schooldays. I also want to


say, Mr Speaker, to the Government about the issue, it is the case that


every single Government for decades has called for parity of esteem


between academic and vocational education. With respect to what they


need to actually answer is wide wheelbase policy initiative of T


levels be different to other policy and that have gone before which have


topped about the courtier of work experience, parity of esteem. The


problem in this country that has not been addressed by the Government,


all of us need are addressed, we have a cultural problem. The


vocational education is not seen as of parity with academic education.


When the Government itself decides what is a good school, it doesn't


say this is a good school because of the number of people in the gets


into high-quality occasional education after sitting. A judge is


it on academic results. If we are judging our schools purely on the


basis of academic achievement, it is a wonder that education is regarded


as second-rate when it shouldn't be. My overview is that there needs to


be a national crusade on vocational education to say that it is


problem in this country, something problem in this country, something


that we need to change attitudes with respect to if we are actually


ever going to deliver that high quality that we need. Across the


whole of the country, there are shortages in skills. In various


industries. The Government needs to spend why what they are proposing


will be different to many of the sound and well-meaning policy


objectives that there were before. Thank you, Mr Speaker. A few weeks


ago I joined the Faversham care worker came on her rounds. I don't


at 7:30am and she had already started washing her first client.


That Lady needed came's help to get up, washed and dressed and have


breakfast, things that we take for granted. If you suffer disabilities,


you may need help. I spent that morning with her because I wanted to


see the challenges we have in social see the challenges we have in social


care for myself. In my constituency, we have an acute sorted of until you


care. Care agencies tell me they care. Care agencies tell me they


cannot recruit enough to meet demand. Not at the rates they can


pay. I am told there are people going without care who need it.


Local hospital to me that any time around a third of their patients


would be kept -- better care for it would be kept -- better care for it


somewhere else. Efficiency agencies have been achieved, but in my part


of Kent, it feels like the care system is only just managing. Across


the country, there are similar stories. That is why I asked the


Chancellor before this Budget if he could find extra money for social


care. I know I was one of many, and care. I know I was one of many, and


I am grateful that we have been heard. This Budget will give social


care ?2 billion more over the next three years, of which 1 billion will


be available in 2017-18. That is an extra 6 million share in Kent. More


than double... It will make a real difference. Also welcome is ?100


million to fund more GPs in a and trees. They are at pressure point.


-- the need for Health and Social Care


is going to rise and the costs with it. The number of over 85s is set to


there are worrying trends about there are worrying trends about


people much anger, in their 60s per instance, living with life limiting


conditions. -- younger. The money to care for people has to come from


somewhere, not adding to get to be paid off by future generations, nor


by tax changes which I have heard some members of the opposition


proposed that have not been thought through and could result in area


cost of care, rather than money that cost of care, rather than money that


is needed. The best way to pay for the increasing cost of care is to


buy having a strong and growing economy. I welcome that this Budget


has boosting productivity at its core. With investment in


infrastructure, skills, education. But we also need to adapt the


changes to the nature of work that are already happening. As the


Secretary of State said earlier, jobs are changing fast. 6% of the


jobs today was 's schoolchildren will do have not been invented. More


people are self-imposed, finding work in the gig economy. We need to


respond. I recognise the extra risks and insecurities for self-employed


and entrepreneurs, I am married to one, and I hope that in the autumn


some of the insecurities of modern work will be addressed, some of the


-- imbalance between self-employed and those in employment. Particular


when you factor in National Insurance contradictions paid by a


point. Business models have developed to take advantage of the


tax differential. In the process, the rapid rise of seven climate is


eroding the tax base and that has to be addressed. We will all get old.


They need care one day. We all need They need care one day. We all need


to contribute to pay for that. Finally, Mr Speaker, I look forward


to the plans green paper on the future of social care funding. We


need a funding system that means providers of care will look ahead


and invest in facilities and is particularly in the workforce. The


people who provide care are at the heart of this. It was a chip


provides to spend time with came in Faversham and see what she did for


the people she cared for. We must make sure that no one has to worry


in future whether they would get the in future whether they would get the


care that they need when they need it. Lastly, the Chancellor delivered


his Budget on International Women's Day. A day when women and men across


the world celebrated women and their conservation to society. And


highlighted how important it is to have an inclusive gender balanced


workplace. I can't think of a better day than International Women's Day


for the Chancellor to show how much we value the contribution that women


make to the economy. Instead, the Chancellor used his Budget to


continue the hard Tory as Verity policies that disproportionately


affect women and men, and indeed their families across this country.


We know that women are affected twice as hard by this Government's


dangerous obsession with austerity. It is very clear that Tory as dirty


as gendered. Cuts to public-sector jobs, increase in temporary and you


are our contract affect women the most. Women make up the majority of


workers living in poverty, with many juggling 23 low-paid part-time jobs


as they try to make ends meet. Where is the help they successfully to


scramble from just about managing to be able to provide for their


families without the fear and stress of ever household budgets. The


gentle started his Speech by talking about preparing for a brighter


future. I have to ask him and his colleagues, in what parallel


universes the future bright for the universes the future bright for the


300,000 children that will be forced into poverty as a result of their


refusal to stop the cuts to the work allowance? This despite a report


from the resolution foundation only this month that one is that the Tory


Government's tax and social security policy would drive the biggest


increase in inequality since Thatcher. Mr Speaker, I grew up in a


single mother Margaret Thatcher. It strikes me that not much has


that on the same page of the Budget that on the same page of the


document, this Government gives document, this Government gives


welcome move yet refuses to take welcome move yet refuses to take


action on the impunity of two child limit and scrappy repugnant rate


clause. As he spoke about the writer future, hundreds of Waspi


campaigners, including women from my constituency, protested outside


parliament and still be Chancellor failed resolutely to outside a


single measure to tackle state pension it was of those women were


tied for their bright future. This Tory Government is exclusion it. The


cuts announced women that Scotland was negated day-to-day Budget will


be an out of those that by 2020, Scotland will be 2.5 billion pounds


of my real terms. This territory, focusing on last to the middle of


the next decade. Public services and household goods face 15 years of UK


Government austerity. A second report projected that child poverty


would increase to 30% by 2122. That said that it was entirely explained


by the direct impact of tax and benefit reforms. Let's not forget,


Mr Speaker, it was only 18 months after the Tory Government came to


power that it scrapped child poverty targets, coming just after child tax


credit cuts. What a shameful way to start your time in Government. This


Government, this Chancellor had a chance to reverse that and he did


nothing. I have asked the Government to act -- tell us why they brought


forward nothing to address the cuts that will hit low to mid income


families. Why has he did nothing to project millions of children from


the prospect of poverty? The poorest quarter of working age households


are projected to be five to 15% worse off. That is an income growth


that it is said that the worst period of income growth for the


poorest households since records began in the mid-19 60s. This is


before the cuts are due to hit. And before Brexit was of the Chancellor


told that his Budget continues the task of getting Britain to live


within its means. I'm sure there are thousands of families across the


country who would love to have the means within which to live. But they


do not. And yet, they are simply struggling every day because of a


punitive measures of this Government. What will be Chancellor


Cologne parents are numerous credit who will lose an average ?2380 per


year. The impact of the benefits freeze in the context of rapid price


registered as a dramatic effect on family incomes, families on a low


income cannot afford to pay increase that will happen as a result of


their policies. It hard to read Brexit remains the


major threat to Scotland. The negative threat has not been


exaggerated. It hasn't happened yet. They have said there will be no


structural improvement and forecasts for the next five years remain


unchanged. The impact of a hard Brexit is yet to be felt. Among the


other tales of a hard Tory Brexit, the change for entrepreneurs and for


the self-employed is going to be devastating. The SNP wholeheartedly


believed in flexible labour markets but that flexibility must be guarded


against vulnerability and self-employed workers in the UK on


low incomes do not enjoy the same guarantees as we have heard. This


budget was an opportunity to do the right thing to support women on low


income families and beaten into austerity. It is nothing more than


an opportunity lost by this Government. This Government might


see a bright future, Bill looks more to me like dark clouds and a perfect


storm for the rest of us. Winter is coming, Mr Speaker, and Scotland is


heading in a different direction. It will be, I think, a new dawn for us.


Education has a key role to play in cycles of poverty but we know that


poverty has a profound impact upon a child's ability to make the most of


any education opportunity available. This budget did nothing to tackle


child poverty which stands at around 4 million in this country. A


shameful figure and one that is set to rise. According to the child


poverty action group, by the age of three, poorer children are estimated


to be an average nine months behind children from wealthier backgrounds.


By the end of primary school, pupils receiving free school meals are


estimated to be almost three times behind children of market affluent


families. By forging, this gap could rose to over five times. -- by 14.


We know as well that the early years are crucial for Child development.


Maintained nursery schools do a really important job for children in


early years and many are struggling financially. The Chancellor chose to


find ?320 million for 140 new free schools. I would really question his


sense of priorities. 65% of nursery schools in the most deprived areas


in the UK. 97% of them are rated good arrow standing Ofsted. No other


part of the education sector can match that and their value cannot be


in doubt. In nursery in my constituency has received three


outstanding judgment in its last three Ofsted report provides a vital


service to families. Around 20% of the children have special


educational needs and or a disability including autism,


epilepsy or mobility problems. The families of a number of children are


on low incomes. The school gives those children the very best start


in life. Despite this service is based on specialist expertise by


highly qualified trained teaching staff, it is funded at the same rate


as all childcare providers. Local authorities can top up the funding.


They have seen their budgets cut severely by central Government. It


has announced extra funding for nursery schools but schools like the


one I spoke about will only see a very small amount. So the school


will remain financially squeezed. If the Government is really serious


about... It should maintain a nursery schools and ensure they get


the funding they need to maintain their future. Between 2013 and 19, a


finding very people in my constituency is expected to fall by


10%. That will mean a loss of ?309 per pupil. This will inevitably lead


to the detriment of the people's education and the morale of staff


and is unacceptable. The arts in education are particularly at risk


at the moment. Uptake of creative subject at secondary level fell by


14% between 2010 and 2015 and the Government has so far failed to


respond to the consultation which included the place of arts subjects


on the curriculum. 90% of respondents reported that either art


music or drama is no longer offered at their school. 20% said one or


more of these subjects have been given reduced timetable space.


Studies here and in the US have shown students from low-income


families who have the opportunity to engage in the arts school are


significantly more likely to go on to get a degree and the role so more


employable overall. We can see these to school funding by damaging the


future prospects of our young people. We also have a real issue


around adult literacy and numeracy, latest Government studies published


in 2011 found that nearly 15% of 16 to 65-year-olds are functionally


illiterate. 23% of people in the survey lacked basic new Morrissey


skills. This is a real crisis and the Government should tackle it as a


matter of urgency. Not only for the individuals but for their families.


Educate the mother or father and of course to educate the child. We need


real investment in adult education. The Chancellor announced 40 million


in funding for 2018 last 29 team for this. There have been cuts of over


?1 billion to the sectors and 2010. I would question the need for


pilots. As someone has a close knowledge of the work of the British


education Association, I can assure the Government there is plenty of


expertise out doubt they can tap into to put together a programme of


adult education and lifelong learning. I would urge them to think


beyond retraining and up killing two. These are vital to provide


training opportunities to move on in terms of employment, but it is


important to provide education for education's 's sake. We see the huge


popularity of things like the great British because, the great painting


challenge, and we can see how the they have everything to do with


creativity and learning. I will join my right honourable friend the


member for Tottenham for the call in the reintroduction of night schools.


Places where people can learn and socialise. They help people growing


confidence and make friends and provide an effective way to tackle


social isolation. They can be transforming for individuals and


their communities. They have a particular important offer in our


ageing society. In her Lancaster house speech setting out the


Government negotiation objectives for exiting the EU, she said they


would aim to build a stronger economy and fairer society. If the


Government is sincere, it should make a priority to fund education.


It should be ambitious as plans for lifelong learning and make a real


priority of tackling child poverty so children are healthy and able to


make the most of the education opportunities on offer. As I call


the honourable member for Sheffield Brightside in Hillsborough, I ensure


members on both side of the House will join me in wishing her a happy


birthday. Thank you, Mr Speaker. This budget is at its heart deeply


unfair and a budget of broken promises and missed opportunities.


As an MP for Sheffield, I grew up here and I'm extremely proud to


represent them in this place. That means standing up for them. There


have been cuts every year to Sheffield City Council for seven


years. Now totalling ?352 million and next year they will have to find


another 40 million to balance the budget. Sheffield is a fantastic


Sethi, with a strong industrial base, we drove the industrial


revolution... But wages have fallen dramatically. Shamefully, it was


recently found that Sheffield was the low pay capital of the UK. There


was little in this budget to help. The self employed at the engine


drivers of entrepreneurship, many at the cutting edge of technology and


self-employment in Sheffield has increased in recent years by 10%.


This shows our city's entrepreneurial character. Real


wages are among those who are self-employed have fallen faster


than employees. For my constituents, a ?2 billion broken promise on


national insurance contributions will have a serious effect on their


livelihoods. And fairness is at the heart of this budget, Mr Speaker. It


will hit low and middle earners hardest. That is hurting working


people in Sheffield, Brightside and Hillsborough. Whilst raising taxes


are the most vulnerable in our society and simultaneously choosing


to do nothing about working standards for the self-employed, the


Chancellor decided to cut taxes for the richest. Since 2010, policy


measures introduced by this Government will, over the next five


years, result in over 70 billion of tax giveaways to big businesses and


the super rich. Meanwhile, as much authority been said about the


contentious business rates. Pubs in my constituency will feel the pain


of increased rates, despite the headline grabbing one year only


discount. The British beer and Pub Association forecast that increases


on beer duty will result in 4000 job losses and more pub closures. We


know what to expect from this Government by now, taking the can


down the road. Naturally, there was no mention for the struggling steel


sector, no mention of climate change in the Chancellor's speech. Social


care is an of emergency due to due to cuts to local council's budgets,


with over 1 million vulnerable elderly people not receiving the


care they need. The extra 2 billion for adult social care does not make


the 4.6 billion in cuts over the last Parliament. Believe me,


councils in the north are not getting the same sorry sweetheart


deal on social care. The Chancellor had an opportunity last Wednesday to


properly address the crisis but he didn't take it. On the NHS, the


Chancellor announced no money to do with hospitals although there is a 5


billion black hole in NHS maintenance. The cuts to nurses


bursaries, have led to a reduction applications for nursing courses. A


E are in crisis. Waiting lists are soaring. Forgive me if I feel this


is all too little too late, ensuring a decent education for our children


should be of absolute priority, not an afterthought. This Government


promised they would protect people spending, but after inflation it has


fallen in real terms another broken promise. In my constituency, Foxhill


primary School will be ?1003 worth of, according to the National union


of teachers. Van beware in 2013. Community primary will be ?1586


worth of people during that same period. Funding per pupil will have


fallen by average 11% from 2013 levels and by 2019. However, there


are 1.5 million fewer adult learners than under the last Labour


Government and since 2010, adult skills training has been cut by 54%.


Furthermore, the further education sector has fared little better.


According to the Institute for Fiscal Studies, I could, by 2020,


spending per student will only just be above the level the 30 years ago


at the end of the 1980s. Mr Speaker, it is ironic that this budget fell


on the same day as International Women's Day. Tory cuts have


disproportionately affected women and sadly this budget did nothing to


change that. This budget has hurt the self-employed, below owners and


those on benefits while letting the richest of the hook. It is a


divisive and unfair budget. The Conservatives are clearly not the


party of the working people of Britain. Mr Speaker, this budget is


at its heart deeply unfair, a budget bill of broken promises and missed


opportunities and it will hurt my constituents of Sheffield,


Brightside and Hillsborough. Thank you. The honourable member for


Willow west has advised me that it is her birthday as well. Again, on


both sides of the House, we wish the honourable lady a very happy


birthday indeed. 'S is deliver confidence. It is


stated that the future is uncertain. Any focus is unlikely to be


unfulfilled, a damning statement has it is likely to be the


responsibility of the Government to create certainty. Brexit approaches


us like a black cloud. Perhaps not be Chancellor's fold, after all, the


Prime Minister set the direction. As the storm approaches, in the modern


parlance of giving impending storms names, we should call it at Maxtor


to reason. This Budget was another missed opportunity to do with the


unfairness of the steep rise in women's venture were aged over to


shorter time frame. -- Storm anti. The Waspi when making a noise


outside Parliament. The Chancellor could not hear it. Death to the


legitimate demands of the Waspi women. Desperately hoping that the


unfairness and inequality would go away. It is not going to go away


like the message last week, the volume is going to be turned up. The


campaign is gathering momentum and the Government are going to have to


listen. 245 Members of Parliament have lodged petitions asking for


action. There was a debate on Westminster Hall on the 9th of


February. The chair at that meeting accepted to the challenge that the


House had not considered the effect of state pension changes on


working-class women after a quite woeful and I may say this respectful


response from the Minister, the Member for Southampton North. The


fact that on the back of the motion being rejected that this matter has


not come back to the Chamber for determination is disgraceful. And we


will continue to pursue this matter. This of course follows a division in


this Chamber on the 1st of December 2016 when the House divided by 106-2


against the motion that the House had considered the Excel oration of


the pension age for women born in the 1950s. No response from the


Government from the vote. They chose to ignore it. When we have been


discussing the matter of women against... The focus has been on the


2.6 million women supposedly affected. That is the number the


Government have referred to. All the Government have referred to. All the


discussions taking place have been around that number. Now it is


alleged from a Freedom of Information request it came to light


last Friday that he action number is 02.6 million women, but 3.4 eight


million women. Nearly 1 million more woman if the reports are accurate


are set to miss out. It is outrageous, if this is the case. I


has the Minister in summing up to give us a narrative. What is the


figure, why the discrepancy? Why at this page does the Government not


appear to know what the exact number of women affected by these changes


is? We had the farce of the situation where it to the Government


14 years to communicate formally with any of the women affected. This


latest twist adds insult to injury. If the reports are true, how did the


Government get the figures wrong? Mr Deputy Speaker, we need answers and


we need answers from the Government front bench today in their summing


up. The UK Government must recognise that pensions ought to be a contract


and not a benefit. In this Budget, it's presented an opportunity for


the Government to live up to the contract. It is clear that


delivering fair pensions is not high on this Government 's at it. With


Budget was completely devoid of any Budget was completely devoid of any


mitigating measures to future proof pension incomes. We need a clear


commitment that the triple lock will remain in place beyond 2020, and


that mitigation will be put in place for the Waspi women. We in the SNP


have published a paper already explain how the Government can push


back the timescales on increasing women's pension age at a cost of 8


billion in this Parliament. Something that is affordable giving


the 30 billion surplus in the National Insurance fund. Why was the


not a take an opportunity in the Budget? Let me say there is talk of


a referendum. I want to make it clear that pensioners in Scotland


would get justice and fair pensions from an SNP Government, something


that is sadly lacking from this UK Tory Government. When we read the


economic and fiscal outlook from the Budget of responsibility, it is a


damning indictment of Government policy over the last few years, and


demonstrates a lack from this Government over our economic future.


Every school in my constituency is facing cuts to funding. Combined


with rising costs. I speak to head teachers all the time, some of whom


had been teaching for many years, who are telling me they are actually


concerned about finding situations. In the past, they have cut


nonessential activities and support services, feel they have no choice


but to cut classroom teachers and whole subject. For the first time


they think the funding cuts will actually impact the quality of the


teaching. I went to an event in my constituency last night for parents


in local schools who are concerned that there were well over ?200


there, there was a real anger amongst them about the prospect of


these cuts. They feel a sense of betrayal that their children are not


going to the of education that their parents feel they deserve. There are


Alice schools ready and willing to Alice schools ready and willing to


do the best they can for our children. They will not be able to


if the resources available to them are not increased. There are many


different causes for the current prices. Not all are related to the


proposed changes to the funding formula. Cost are increasing due to


unavoidable pension and NIC increases. The Government is


stopping grants ending in September. Many schools find themselves


absurdly having to play the apprenticeship that it was the


funding formula will also increase funding formula will also increase


the money available to schools in my constituency, many of them. Parents


and teachers are not uninformed. They know there is a squeeze on


public spending. They know belts have to be tightened their borrowing


has to be cut. They question some of the dishes and is being made. --


decision. A report from the National Audit Office finds that the free


schools programme originally budgeted for 90 million will now


cost 9 billion. Because of procuring line for school buildings is a big


company, 2.5 billion. The estimate that the funding agency is paying


30% of the value of land for new schools. Some of the sites are being


purchased for schools in areas where there is no demand for extra school


places. Nobody is arguing there isn't an urgent need for new school


visits. With of all in my own constituency which badly needs a new


secondary school. But the free School programme is not providing a


cost effective or efficient solution to the needs that needs to be


reviews. Tougher regulations on land resources and targeting the areas of


greatest needs will provide more money and free up resources for new


schools and for existing schools. The Budget announcement including


money put aside for grammar schools to be introduced. I have searched


the 20 15th manifesto, can find no mention. If Theresa May can find the


necessity for a mandate of her own, she has an obligation to deliver


what the Conservatives were elected on. She has no mandate for grammar


schools. This is not a spending choice the public were asked to vote


on. No evidence that grammar schools provide better education. Surely the


only goal... I visited a composite School in my constituency yesterday.


Rated outstanding in all areas. I was impressed by the quality of


teaching on display. I watched a year 11 history lesson and years


seven French lesson. The headteacher said they had introduced a classical


server licensing A-level in response to demand from pupils. One is now at


headteacher is worried, as the all, headteacher is worried, as the all,


that the cuts in funding means that she will not be able to deliver the


A-levels she used to. There is nothing... At this excellent


comments of school cannot already deliver and deliver without advice


of selection. I call on the premise that to cancel plans for unnecessary


grammars and make use of the excellent provisions already


available in education and continue to ensure its excellence. The


Chancellor and parameter has both stated that commitment to increasing


choice in education. Choice is no good to parents who already have


children in schools that are facing funding cuts. Choice implies that


there are places in a range of schools for each child, and that


parents only need to make a decision. The reality is that this


would be any extraordinary week with a way to find school places. Most


parents take the place in the school they are offered. Rather than


choice, most parents just want to know that the school place offered


is for the best education possible. I call on the Government to look at


extending plans for education and to take lead on a rising chorus of


protest against cutting budgets in my constituency and elsewhere.


Investing in education is essential for securing a prosperous future for


this country and skills training, not grammar school is, should be the


priority if we are to survive outside EU. The T levels will be


aligned with NVQs. How much of the proposed spending will be... That


could have been spent directly on teaching convocations. I do


believe this Budget provides the believe this Budget provides the


best possible provision... Which she worked with me and other colleagues


on examining whether or not the apprenticeship Navy being taken by


local authorities and imposed upon all schools in our constituencies is


either right or lawful is I thank the honourable lady. . I quite


agree. To include the schools in the apprenticeship levy is absurd. The


apprenticeship levy is due to raise money for training and in


employment. And to levy this on schools which are already providing


excellent learning opportunities is outrageous. I welcome the honourable


certainly work with her to certainly work with her to


investigate this further. To conclude, I do not believe this


Budget provides the best possible provision for education in this


country. As families that the Chancellor to look again at their


spending plan. I would like to thank colleagues who have spoken today.


They have torn this Budget apart. The Member for Washington and


Sunderland West, Lewisham East, Burnley, Redcar, Sheffield


Brightside, Hillsborough. And menu honourable friend the man for Stoke


Central and many other people. Lastly, the Chancellor painted a


rosy picture of the nation's finances. He claimed the


Conservative party's stewardship has been nothing short of miraculous.


The Chancellor attempt tempting joke throughout his Speech. The Prime


Minister showed shaking with amusement. Many members chuckled.


Some of the more experienced members were watching cautiously as the


nosedive gain velocity. The Chancellor got it wrong the time.


Within hours, he was attacked by members of his own backbenchers. He


was hung out to dry by the primers that, and unsurprisingly has faced


universal criticism of his plans to raise National Insurance to 11% for


millions of people who are 75. As Sir Michael Caine in the iconic


Italian Job movie set, you are only supposed to blow the doors of --


off. While the debris of the exposure is descending committee


manifesto pledge broken, pure and simply. Sisters Wednesday, ten and


number 11 have been in a briefing war with each other child to blame


the other for the fine mess. Ostensibly, number ten suggest the


chance that snaked the National Insurance rising to the Budget.


Apparently, other colleagues indicated she failed to mention that


would break their manifesto pledge. It is worrying, as my honourable


friend said, that Cabinet members do not know their own manifesto


commitments. Perhaps they don't care. Then again, the Government has


a attitude towards this manifesto commitment. Then again, this


insouciant attitude goes on. First the Government committed to getting


rid of the debt by 2015. Broken promise. Pushed back to 2019-20.


Another broken promise. Thirdly, debt starting to come down after


2015, another broken promise. The Government will vote on the job and


double the time they have taken to get it down. This is what they call


success and fiscal credibility. They seem to think they can simply press


the reset button when it comes to meeting their own fiscal rules. And


no one will notice. The flip side of the approach meant that, when I


change my mind, the facts change with it!


Now he has had his fun, Katie explained how he is going to find or


proposing the Labour Party would find the money required for a social


care? Eight fiscal rectitude. When the Government misses the deadline,


its modus operandi is to set up a new one and brazenly move on. The


immutable law of Tory economics, make it up as you go along. What


happened to the long-term economic plan? It didn't last very long. The


Prime Minister and the Chancellor have their fingerprints all over


every single financial decisions made during the past seven years. It


is no surprise they have come under criticism from many in their own


party, including the former member for Whitney and the former


Chancellor Norman Lamont. He called this a rookie error. Otherwise known


in the real world as gross incompetence. Regrettably, it is


other people who will pay the price for that incompetence. Turning to


Brexit. I will mention it even if the Chancellor doesn't want to. It


is the tenth anniversary since the production of free Britain to


compete, equipping the UK for globalisation. The publication was a


wide ranging policy document offered by the Right Honourable member for


walking and friends. It was endorsed by the then shadow, -- Cabinet. The


publication that was hard to track down as it has been removed from the


Conservative Party website, for good reason, but I find a copy. Its


contents were toxic and all the more so in the wake of the subsequent


global financial crisis and remains so. But in the light of Brexit and


the resurgence of the honourable member's influence, it will soon get


a second run out. It is worth the praise of the House, it includes


policies such as the abolition of inheritance tax, charging foreign


lorries to use British roads, the potential abolition of the BBC


licence fee which are advised -- refers to as the poll tax. The


deregulation of mortgage finance, because it is the lending


institution rather than the client taking the risk. Try telling that to


someone whose home has been repossessed. It goes on, we need to


make it more difficult for ministers to regulate. Remember this document


was dated 2007 and was rubber-stamped by the current Prime


Minister and the Chancellor at the time as Northern Rock was about to


go under. It continues, listen to this one, the Labour Government


claims that this regulation is all necessary. They seem to believe that


without it the banks could steal -- steal our money. That might not be


the case, but we had liabilities in the banking crisis. Mr Speaker, many


people did believe the banks were stealing money and queued up outside


banks accordingly. It refers to wanting reliably low inflation,


taking the risks by turning fiscal rules into flexible friends. Not the


Chancellor has got many of them nowadays. As for Europe, in search


of jobs in perspective, it says they should go to Brussels with proposals


to do regulate -- deregulate the whole of the EU. No wonder they


wanted to bury the evidence. It is the order biography of the hardline


Brexit and the Tory blueprint for a post Brexit deregulated Britain. It


is a race to the bottom. These policies are is telling narrative of


the views of the fundamentalist wing of the Conservative Party and the


Prime Minister is hostage to that right wing and she is on the hook.


The stage direction coming from looking hammer, North Somerset,


occasional guest appearances by the Foreign Secretary. He was briefed


against because he may just have a less hardline approach to Brexit


than his colleagues. These are the dusted off policies of hard Brexit


tears who will stop until nothing when Britain becomes a low-wage, low


tax the regulation economy. They want to turn our country, not the


country, our country into the bargain basement of the Western


world and we have the Prime Minister Intel. Parliamentary scrutiny is a


hindrance. Meanwhile the Prime Minister has put kamikaze pilots in


the cockpit. The Chancellor knows this too well and that is why there


is a reported 60 billion set aside as a trauma fund, a failure funds.


It is not Brexit proof in the economy, rather proving the economy


from a toxic ideology of the Brexiteers. The Government's


proposal to increase premium -- premium insurance tax is a


regressive measure and we will not be supporting it. I was surprised to


see in the Autumn Statement it is coming from the Government he uses


the high cost of insurance premiums as an excess of curbs on victim


right to claim compensation. While the Government drives up insurance


for millions of families, it wants to forego 70 billion of revenue. As


far as we're concerned, Mr Speaker, the budget claims it is very low and


middle earners. The NHS, social care industries, self-employed, schools,


businesses, pubs, the entrepreneurs, it wants to give them the thumbs up.


There is not giving a thumbs up to those people, it is beating two


fingers up to them. That is something Labour will never do.


Thank you, Mr Deputy Speaker. This is a budget that demonstrates that


this Government has the determination to face up to our


long-term challenges, this is the budget recognises the only


sustainable way to improve living standards is to improve our


productivity and this is a budget that recognises that sustainable


public finances are not an impediment to prosperity but in


necessary we can discern. -- precondition. I would like to thank


my honourable friend who participated in this debate, can I


say a particular congratulations to the honourable member for


Stoke-on-Trent Central. I apologise for having missed his speech but I


have heard from a number of people it was excellent. And proves that in


terms of his attributes as a member of Parliament, it is not only that


he is not Paul Nuttall that he will be welcome in this place. In terms


of other contributions from the opposition benches, I could properly


summarise them in saying we are not spending enough, we are tackling too


much and we are borrowing too much. Thankfully, it's not my job to


reconcile it but I wish the honourable Burrell -- honourable


member the best of luck. He can see it fiscal rectitude of the likes. An


important part of this budget has been ensuring that this country has


the skills we need to grow in the 21st-century. Because we have to


face up to the fact that tomorrow's labour market is going to look very


different to today's. One study estimates that over a third of all


jobs in the UK are at high risk of replacement, in the next one or two


decades, as technology and Society advances. Economic, social and


technological change can make certain jobs or institutions


obsolete. Lamplighter 's, handling Uighurs, I suppose you could add the


Labour Party to that list. The job of Government is not to stand in the


way of those, preserving the old by stifling menu. Our role is to


prepare the country and its people to adapt to the changes ahead. That


is what this budget was all about, giving young people the skills they


will need to get ahead in tomorrow's world. That includes expanding the


programme of free skills, investing more in schools maintenance,


reforming technical education and increasing teaching hours for


further education students. Alongside that, we also took steps


to help people with the opportunities to up and reskill


throughout their working lives as well as to help our top researchers


to develop so that our brightest can become the worldbest. We are taking


forward an ambitious plan to improve education across the board for


people of all backgrounds and of all ages. Because that alongside our


investment in the country's underlying infrastructure is what


will count in turning the tide on Britain's long-standing productivity


problems. It is only by doing that that we can increase living


standards and fund world-class public services. But as we prepare a


bright future for the 21st century, we do so responsibly. This was a


budget that protected and improved our health and social services, a


budget that invested in reform and reform for the benefit the next


generation of workers and businesses alike. A budget that did so by


finding all of the new spending commitments it made. Unlike the


party opposite, we don't believe in spending and promising what we can't


deliver. And that does mean having a tax base that is capable of funding


the public services that we provide and doing so anyway that is fair. We


have heard a lot of mention of the change we made in national insurance


for the self-employed and we are listening to our Honourable member


's's concerns. We have to recognise the difference between the benefits


received by the implied and the self-employed have narrowed the gap


in contributions has not. This means the implied to pay a lot more if the


same benefits. As self-employment grows in our economy, a welcome


trend, that does not place a pressure on funding public services


and deficit reduction. A Government addressing long-term challenges has


too address this point, not ignore it. So, Mr Deputy Speaker, this is a


budget that keeps Britain working. One that invests in our people and


public services but one that does so responsibly, continuing to steer the


country's was away from Labour spend what you can borrow approach to our


spend what you can afford approach. In doing so we are once again


demonstrating the other part of it is delivering for this generation,


without doing so at the expense of the Next Generation. That is why, Mr


Speaker, the house should support the budget and the lobbies tonight.


The question is only in. The ayes have it. On the motions of procedure


numbers 47 to 51, on all of which the bill is to be brought in, these


motions are set out in a separate paper distributed with today's order


paper. I must inform the House for the purposes of standing order


number 83 and on that basis of material put before Mr Speaker who


certified that... Published on the 8th of March 2017 and moved by the


Chancellor of the Exchequer related exclusively to England, Wales and


Northern Ireland and are within the competence. Income tax, landfill


tax. With the leave of the House Albot the questions that I


delusional questions to 218 together. As many of that opinion


they aye. The ayes have it. We now come to motion 19 on the separate


paper relating to business investment relief. As many of that


opinion say aye. Clear the lobbies.


Live coverage of the Tuesday's proceedings in the House of Commons, including the statement by prime minister Theresa May on the recent EU summit in Brussels and the final day of debate on the Spring Budget 2017.