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UK PM Johnson vows 23.5 billion pounds more spending and tax cuts

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has promised 23.5 billion pounds ($30.15 billion) of tax cuts and extra spending which he sought to contrast with the opposition Labour Party’s plans.

Facing a general election on December 12, the governing Conservative Party rolled out an election manifesto that promised more public sector spending and no further extensions to the protracted departure from the EU.

The most expensive tax cut planned by Johnson’s Conservative Party was a raising of the threshold for paying social security contributions, while much of the extra spending was on the health service.

"In the first two years, the effect is negative but the current budget remains in surplus," the Conservative Party said in the manifesto. "In the second two years, the effect is positive. Over the period, the cumulative effect is close to zero."

Johnson’s manifesto - titled “Get Brexit Done, Unleash Britain’s Potential” - pledged to freeze income tax, value-added sales tax and social security payments.

“We won’t gamble with taxpayers’ money or this country’s economic future. That is why we have set out clear rules that will keep borrowing and debt under control,” UK Finance Minister Sajid Javid said in a document accompanying the manifesto.

The Labour Party was proposing “reckless plans and ideological experiments” which would reduce investment in Britain, he said.

Under the Conservatives’ plans, day-to-day spending would rise by 2.9 billion pounds a year by the 2023/24 financial year, dwarfed by Labour’s 83 billion-pound planned rise as it promises to reverse a decade of tight spending controls on many services.

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