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Amendment of the Law

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 4:49 pm on 20th March 2014.

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Photo of Sajid Javid Sajid Javid The Financial Secretary to the Treasury 4:49 pm, 20th March 2014

The pension changes will give people a choice that they have never had before: it is their pension, and it is their choice.

Our businesses are not, as the Opposition would have us believe, the enemy; they are the reason why our economy is growing faster than any other advanced economy. They are the reason why more than 1.6 million jobs have been created in the private sector during the past four years. Many Opposition Members have spoken today about the importance of bringing down unemployment, on which they are absolutely right to focus. They might have some good ideas about how to do it, so I thought that I would look at the facts. I can report that unemployment went up during Labour’s last term and has fallen under this Government in the constituency of every Opposition Member who has spoken today. For example, in the constituency of Mr Robinson, who is not in his place, unemployment went up 98% under Labour, and is down 29% under this Government. In the constituency of Tom Greatrex, it went up 96% under Labour, and is 17% down under this Government. Which Opposition Member saw the largest increase in unemployment? Ed Balls saw a record increase of 184% in unemployment in his constituency during Labour’s last term, when he was in office, but it is down 21% under this Government. As expected, Opposition Members know how to create problems, but they have no idea how to solve them.

This Government trust businesses and want to help them, and we want to help the savers, the doers and the makers. This Budget does all those things, and I commend it to the House.

Ordered, That the debate be now adjourned.— (Mr Gyimah.)

Debate to be resumed Monday 24 March.