What are the priorities for the economic recovery from the coronavirus shock and how can we target support at those areas and sectors hit hardest?
- Building on the lessons of the outbreak, how can we ensure work is fulfilling, secure and well paid?
- How can we build an economy that is fairer and more sustainable after Covid-19?
- How can we ensure families and households are financially resilient to future economy and personal crises?
- How can we move towards a new social contract with business after the outbreak, providing investment, support and a level playing field?
Labour International CLP welcomes the analysis in the document Economic Recovery and Renewal after Coronavirus as a counterweight to the economic narrative we find in BBC and mainstream media reporting and commentary; recalls Labour’s existing policies, particularly on the Green Industrial Revolution, Green New Deal and extending worker ownership and cooperatives; recognises that the Covid-19 emergency has created new imperatives to ensure a more resilient economy with better recognition of the value of all forms of labour; recalls that the economy was already weakened by low productivity, low wages and low rates of investment; notes the weakness of an economy with an overemphasis on finance creating an imbalance in production and regional development as well as an overvalued currency.
Labour International believes:
that the current health emergency will accelerate some existing trends in the economy and throw others into reverse. The retreat from globalisation, the shift to low carbon energy sources, the loss of faith in market solutions, for example, will continue. Global travel will decline while the uses of communications technology will change office work; that the increased pace of economic transition will have immediate costs as existing patterns of production are disrupted resulting in rising unemployment and loss of job security; that support to business should be conditional on tax, environmental and employment standards, in particular:
- that multinational corporations must pay an amount of tax in the UK commensurate with the profits earned there,
- that zero hours contracts must end and full employment rights granted to those working in the so-called ‘gig economy’,
- and that equity stakes are preferable to loans;
- that resilience should apply to households and not just production with new approaches to reducing precarity, insecure employment, and lack of opportunity.
Labour International wants Labour Party policy to: put the climate emergency at the heart of rebuilding the economy after Covid-19; pursue an industrial strategy that provides training, investment and support to industries and services needed in the new carbon neutral economy; provide support to firms who need to transition out of old carbon creating sectors to diversify into new sustainable production; build resilience by shortening supply lines with less need for cross border production and environmentally costly transportation; use the reshoring of supply chains as an opportunity to create high skill, high paid, high productivity jobs.
In particular Labour’s policies should include: an end to outsourcing in the NHS, using the savings to expand training for doctors, nurses and other health professionals; reform of the care sector to ensure workers’ contribution is properly paid and recognised; a job guarantee for all young people, including in support of a green transition; a new institution to hold equity stakes in businesses rescued by government support. A commitment to fostering and strengthening public models of ownership including but not contained to, national, municipal and co-operative based models.
- carried 14.6.2020 Portugal branch ordinary meeting.
- amended composite with Paris and NE France branch 21.6.2020
- amended and carried 21.6.2020 Labour International G.C. meeting.
Read the consultation document here: