Keir Starmer pledges to make UK fastest growing in G7 under Labour’s five national ‘missions’

Sir Keir has outlined five missions that he'll offer to voters in the next General Election, as ITV News Deputy Political Editor Anushka Asthana reports

By Lewis Denison, ITV News Westminster Producer

Keir Starmer has promised a Labour government would make the UK economy become the fastest growing in the G7, as he set out his five national “missions”.

In a bid to contrast with Rishi Sunak's top priorities, the Labour leader laid out his plan to "ruffle feathers across Whitehall and beyond" and spark a “decade of national renewal”.

The long-term plan will be “tough” to achieve, Sir Keir admitted as he suggested it would take two terms to complete but he said it was important to “fix the fundamentals” and “restore pride and purpose”.

Setting out why the change is required, he said: “Pick any of the current problems: energy security, productivity, immigration. We could be here all day but it wouldn’t matter – the pattern is always the same.

“Distracted by the short-term obsessions that fixate Westminster, held back by a cynicism, which uses low trust in politics as an excuse to narrow our ambitions, blinkered to the potential of an active government setting the direction, we lurch from crisis to crisis, always reacting, always behind the curve. A sticking plaster, never a cure.”

Keir Starmer's five national missions:

  • Securing the highest sustained growth in the G7, with good jobs and productivity growth in every part of the country

  • Making Britain a “clean energy superpower” with zero-carbon electricity generation by 2030

  • Building an NHS fit for the future by reforming health and care services to speed up treatment, harnessing life sciences and technology to reduce preventable illness and cutting health inequalities

  • Making Britain’s streets safe by reforming the police and justice system, to prevent crime, tackle violence against women and stop criminals getting away without punishment; and

  • Breaking down the barriers to opportunity by reforming the childcare and education systems.

Sir Keir said his pledge on growth would drive up living standards across the country.

“I’m not interested in a model of growth where London races ahead and the rest of our country stagnates,” he said.

“Nor will I be satisfied if our growth depends on creating jobs that are low paid and insecure.

“We need growth from the grassroots – a new model. Wealth created everywhere, by everyone, for everyone.”

That would mean “good jobs and stronger productivity in every part of the country”, he said.

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Sir Keir also vowed to fix the Brexit deal and “reset our relationship with the EU”.

Taking aim at the Conservatives, in particular former prime minister Liz Truss and her supporters, he stressed the need for economic stability and said “they still don’t understand that chaos has a cost”.

“The noises you hear from them are a primal scream, the last gasp of a party caught between a rock of stagnation and the hard place of its economic recklessness.”

Sir Keir’s economic pledge would mean the UK outstripping the US, Germany, France, Italy, Canada and Japan in terms of growth, something he conceded “is going to be tough”.

Over the coming months the party will set out a series of “measurable ambitions” for each mission at events around the country - much like the way Prime Minister Sunak has been talking about his priorities at his 'PM connect' gatherings.

What are Rishi Sunak's top five priorities?

  • Halving inflation this year to ease the cost of living and give people financial security

  • Growing the economy, creating better-paid jobs and opportunity across the country

  • Making sure national debt is falling

  • Getting NHS waiting lists down and ensuring people get the care they need more quickly

  • Stopping the small boats crossing the English Channel, with new laws to make sure that if people come to the country illegally they are detained and deported.

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