Rishi Sunak to pledge tax cuts and first-time buyer help in Tory manifesto

As Rishi Sunak attempts to close the polling gap with Labour, the prime minister will be hoping to improve his party’s outlook and entice voters back to the Tories with an abundance of tax cuts

Rishi Sunak is expected to draw upon the legacy of Margaret Thatcher with tax cuts and support for first-time buyers as he launches the Conservatives' General Election manifesto.

Mr Sunak will launch the Tory manifesto on Tuesday after a bruising few days on the campaign trail as the fallout over his early departure from D-Day commemorations to record an ITV Tonight interview continued.

As he attempts to move on and close the polling gap with Labour, Mr Sunak will be hoping to improve his party’s outlook and entice voters back to the Tories with an abundance of tax cuts.

The prime minister’s offer will include a 100% relief on capital gains tax liability for landlords who sell to their existing tenants, claiming the move will be “transformational”.

The prime minister is hoping to entice voters with promises of tax cuts. Credit: PA

Mr Sunak, who acknowledged during a BBC interview that it has become harder for people to own their first home under the Conservatives, will also pledge to abolish stamp duty up to the value of £425,000 for first-time buyers and launch a “new and improved” Help to Buy scheme.

The Conservative leader has also said tax cuts will be included in the manifesto, with reports suggesting another 2p cut to national insurance.

The Tories have an ambition to scrap national insurance when financially responsible to do so, with Labour suggesting such a policy could cost £46 billion by 2029/30.

Labour predicted the Tory manifesto will be the “most expensive panic attack in history”.

The prime minister will tell voters the Tories believe in “sound money” given they are the “party of Margaret Thatcher and Nigel Lawson”, the latter renowned for cutting taxes during his time as chancellor in the Thatcher government.

Other policy pledges will include a promise not to increase income tax, national insurance or VAT, an expansion of levelling up funding with a pledge to give 30 towns £20 million, and plans to boost community care by expanding Pharmacy First and building 100 new GP surgeries and modernising 150 more.

Rishi Sunak repeatedly claimed Labour was plotting tax rises during the ITV debate with Sir Keir Starmer Credit: Jonathan Hordle/ITV

The party has also promised to increase the income tax personal allowance for pensioners, giving them a tax cut worth around £95 in 2025-26, rising to £275 in 2029-30.

Despite drawing criticism from the opposition and members of his own party, mandatory national service for 18-year-olds, one of the first pledges by Mr Sunak, remains in the manifesto.

The scheme would require teenagers to choose between taking a 12-month placement in the armed forces or “volunteer” work in their community one weekend a month for a year.

The prime minister is also expected to take aim at Labour in his manifesto launch speech.

He is expected to say: "He says he’s a socialist, and we know what socialists always do: take more of your money.

"And we know that the plans Labour have already announced will require them to increase taxes on working households by £2,094."

The UK's official statistics regulator has launched an investigation into Mr Sunak's claims Sir Keir will increase taxes by £2,000 per household, which Labour has refuted.

The prime minister's claim was one of the hot topics of last Tuesday's head-to-head live ITV showdown with Sir Keir.

Labour branded Mr Sunak a liar over the suggestion, with Sir Keir describing the claims as "absolute garbage".

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Pat McFadden, Labour’s national campaign co-ordinator, said: “The one thing to know about the desperate series of unfunded commitments in the Tory manifesto is that the money’s not there.

“Their manifesto will be the most expensive panic attack in history. The Tories’ scattergun and unfunded commitments have racked up billions with no idea from them of how to pay for it.

“They used to care about economic credibility. Now, in their desperation, they spend every day torching whatever remnants of it they had left.”

Wendy Chamberlain, Liberal Democrat work and pensions spokesperson, said: “Rishi Sunak’s manifesto isn’t worth the paper it’s printed on.

“The only guarantee they’re good for is unmitigated failure.

“The wheels have already fallen off their campaign, and the promises they make are just a desperate attempt to rescue Rishi Sunak.”

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