Unemployment

Part of Rating (Business Premises Relief) – in the House of Commons at 6:14 pm on 24th June 1981.

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Photo of Mr William Rodgers Mr William Rodgers , Teesside Stockton 6:14 pm, 24th June 1981

I agree with the right hon. Gentleman, particularly on a prices policy. We need to look closely at profits, because if they are not earned there will be a shortage of investment which will work its way into the: system and affect opportunities for employment. I certainly agree that the matter must be looked at as a. composite.

The only way that any Government will succeed in that sphere is not by cobbling up a hasty incomes policy in a moment of economic crisis but by working it out seriously in advance, advocating it in Opposition and, coming into Government with a mandate from the electorate for a prices and incomes policy, and perhaps a policy on profits, as part of a total economic package to set before the nation. That is a formula for success.

I should be gratefully warmed in my expectations of the outcome of the debate if from both the Opposition Front Bench and the right hon. Lady the Prime Minister we had a plain statement that a strategy for incomes has a part to play in the economic management which is crucial to a much lower level of unemployment than that from which we now suffer.