Yesterday, the Chancellor delivered a One Nation Budget for working people.
In 2010 Labour had left Britain’s economy in a mess. Thanks to the hard work and sacrifice of the British people over the last five years, we’ve been able to turn it around. But we know the job is not finished – and there is much more we still have to do to secure a better future for everyone in Britain.
That is why this Budget puts security first. The economic security of a country that lives within its means. The financial security of lower taxes and a new National Living Wage. And the national security of a country that defends itself and its values.
This is a One Nation Budget from a One Nation Government: continuing to move Britain from a low wage, high tax and high welfare economy to a higher wage, lower tax and lower welfare society - so that those who work hard and do the right thing are able to get on.
The Chancellor yesterday set out our plan to create a new National Living Wage.
Britain deserves a pay rise. In the last five years we’ve taken the tough choices to drive down our borrowing, make our business taxes competitive and reform welfare.
It’s because we’ve taken these difficult decisions that the Chancellor was able to announce a new National Living Wage, compulsory as of next April, expected to reach £9 an hour by 2020. This will benefit 6 million workers, and boost pay for those on the Minimum Wage by £5,200 by 2020.
Tackling low pay is part of our plan to move to a higher wage, lower tax and lower welfare society, building a more productive Britain and giving families the security of well-paid work.
The Chancellor announced yesterday that defence spending will meet the NATO pledge of two per cent of our national income for the rest of this decade.
Britain has always been resolute in the defence of liberty and the promotion of stability around the world. And under this government it will always remain so.
That is why in this Budget we guarantee a real increase in the defence budget every year – and will create a £1.5 billion a year joint security fund by the end of the year. This means we can commit today to meet the NATO pledge to spend two per cent of our national income on defence – not just this year, but every year of this decade.
This will ensure that Britain’s defence budget, already one of the largest in the world, continues to support world-class armed forces, with the equipment and capabilities needed to deliver security for Britain in an unstable world.