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Thursday, July 25, 2024

The first female finance minister in the history of Great Britain – Rachel Reeves

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Britain's Chancellor of the Exchequer Rachel Reeves has announced plans to boost house building, unlock infrastructure projects and attract private investment, among the plans for a new “national mission” to drive economic growth.

“Growth is now our national mission,” Reeves said in a speech in London, stressing there was “no time to waste.”

“I have repeatedly warned that whoever wins the general election will inherit the worst situation since World War II. What I have seen in the last 72 hours has only confirmed that,” she explained.

New British Finance Minister Rachel Reeves

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One of the keys to growth is construction and infrastructure. Reeves said a Labour government would set a binding target of building 1.5 million new homes over the next five years, including affordable social housing, in line with her election manifesto. To achieve this, planning permissions would be simplified and a taskforce would be set up to speed up the delivery of stalled housing projects.

New British Chancellor of the Exchequer Rachel ReevesADAM VAUGHAN/EPA/PAP

The complicated procedure of obtaining building permits is indicated as the main reason for the serious housing deficit that the country is facing. Great Britainand at the same time as one of the brakes on economic growth. The target announced by Reeves means the need to build 300,000 homes a year, a level that was last achieved in the 1950s.

The problem of slow permitting and the ease with which local communities can block investments is even more acute for infrastructure projects. The minister announced that decisions on large infrastructure projects will be made at the national, not local, level, and that the de facto ban on onshore wind development will be lifted.

She assured that the Labour government does not intend to increase national insurance contributions or VAT, the UK is a safe place to invest, is open to business and wants to work with companies.

After the Labour Party took power on Friday, Reeves became the first female finance minister in British history.

Main image source: ADAM VAUGHAN/EPA/PAP

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