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Iain Wright, Labour’s Shadow Minister for Industry

“The construction sector is a vital part of the British economy, providing over 6 per cent of total economic output as well as over two million jobs.

“But since 2010 this vital industry has been let down by the Government.”

1) Apprenticeships

  • Employers will have more control over apprenticeships funding and standards. In return, for increasing the number of high quality apprenticeships in their sectors and supply chains
  • Support part-time study
  • Apprenticeships will be co-funded, co-designed and co-delivered by employers
  • Require any firms, that win large government contracts, to offer apprenticeships

2) Employment

  • Increase the National Minimum Wage to more than £8 an hour by October 2019
  • Introduce Make Work Pay contracts – providing tax rebates to firms becoming Living Wage employers

3) Housing

  • 200,000 new homes a year to be built by 2020, with first priority for first time buyers
  • Give local authorities new ‘use it or lose it’ powers to encourage developers to build


“The downturn in construction in 2011 and 2012 was caused by the Government’s choking off of demand for infrastructure investment and house building. As a result, construction output is at 2003 levels in real terms.

“Such an important industry needs more recognition from government.”

4) Economic

  • A National Infrastructure Commission will be set up to assess how best to meet Britain’s infrastructure needs
  • Continue to support the construction of High Speed Two, but keep costs down, and take action to improve and expand rail links across the North to boost its regional economies
  • Support long-term investment in strategic roads, address the neglect of local roads, and promote cycling

5) Energy

  • Create a million additional green jobs
  • Legal target to remove the carbon from our electricity supply by 2030



Grant Shapps, Co-chairman of the Conservative Party

Our long-term economic plan is turning around Britain’s economy.

“We have set out a plan of building on the successes of the previous Parliament that will hold direct and instant improvements for multiple areas of the construction industry.”


1) Apprenticeships

  • Back British businesses to boost the number of apprentices: cutting red tape, lowering taxes on jobs and enterprise, getting young people into work and investing in science and technology

2) Small Businesses

  • Cut Corporation Tax from 28 to 20 per cent over the course of the Parliament
  • Boost our support for first-time exporters and back the GREAT campaign, so we achieve our goal of having 100,000 more UK companies exporting in 2020 than in 2010 and reach our target of £1 trillion in exports

3) Employment

  • Reach a Minimum Wage that will be over £8 by the end of the decade
  • Take further steps to eradicate abuses of workers, such as non-payment of the Minimum Wage, exclusivity in zero hour’s contracts and exploitation of migrant workers


“Thanks to the success of our long-term economic plan, Britain is creating more jobs than the 27 other countries of the European Union put together.

“Over the past five years, 1.9 million new jobs have been created; 1,000 jobs for every single day that we have been in government.”


4) Housing

  • Create a £1 billion Brownfield Regeneration Fund worth a billion pounds over four years
  • Build 200,000 quality Starter Homes over the course of the next Parliament, reserved for first-time buyers under 40 and sold at 20 per cent below the market price
  • For those dreaming of building their home from scratch, we will require Councils to find land, helping tens of thousands of small builders

5) Energy

  • Investing £300 million in cutting light pollution from new roads, doing more tunnelling, building better noise barriers and helping to restore lost habitat
  • We will also replace locally any biodiversity lost in the construction of High Speed 2
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