My hon. Friend makes his point succinctly. There will come a time when all the events that have taken place in the financial markets in the past few weeks will of course need to be addressed, but right now our duty as a House of Commons and as a nation is to seek stability in our economy and to take the steps that we need to take to protect jobs, to protect businesses and to ensure that we can look after those who are unfortunate enough to lose their jobs. The other big step that the Government need to take to protect business and jobs is on tax. It cannot help employment prospects in this country if some of our biggest firms are transferring their headquarters and domiciles to other countries so that they can take advantage of favourable tax regimes in places such as Ireland. That cannot help the employment prospects of people in this country either. That is why we continue to argue that we need to cut the main rate of corporation tax from 28p to 25p and to reverse the Government's planned increase in the small companies rate from 20p to 22p. The costs of such a reform can be met by dramatically reducing the complex structure of allowances that the Government have introduced for business. We need a simpler and more attractive tax regime in this country that makes it attractive to do business here, that protects jobs and that attracts employers to this country in the future.
I sincerely hope that unemployment does not rise as far and as fast as some are predicting.
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