Four key things Labour's Rachel Reeves said in flagship speech on the economy

The Shadow Chancellor slammed the ‘f*** business’ Prime Minister Boris Johnson and promised to work closely with business bosses – meanwhile she refused to call a by-election in Bury South

Rachel Reeves, the Shadow Chancellor, giving her speech this morning
Rachel Reeves, the Shadow Chancellor, giving her speech this morning

Boris Johnson has been accused of wasting the country’s money, talent and potential as he stands engulfed in scandals and lies.

Shadow Chancellor Rachel Reeves slammed the Prime Minister for leading a party which prioritises its party above the needs of the country.

Making her speech from Bury, the heart of the Red Wall, Ms Reeves said: “The [Conservative] party is not of productive business, but of crony capitalism.

She recalled the PM’s expletive remarks when asked about business concerns post-Brexit and said it’s how he’s organised the government.

“When the Prime Minister said ‘F- business’, I thought it was a throwaway remark. Little did I know it would be the central organising principle of his government.

“The [Conservative] party is not of productive business, but of crony capitalism”, she said. Pictured: She talks to managing director Ashok Kallumpram during a tour of Premier Textiles Ltd


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“And what’s left?

“A government of waste – wasted money, wasted talent and wasted potential.

“This calls for a new contract between the government and the British people.”

Ms Reeves’ contract – the latest to be unveiled from the Labour Party – includes plans to scrub up Britain’s industries aiming to increase British manufacturing, create more apprenticeships for young people and to invest in Britain.

Describing the last decade as “lost” thanks to successive Conservative governments she said it’s been a “vicious circle” of difficulty.

Here are some of the main things she said.

A secure economy

The Shadow Chancellor promised to give Brits a future with a secure economy.This will only come from more investment, according to Ms Reeves.

She said: “Where the Conservatives scrapped their own Industrial Strategy Council, Labour will create an industrial strategy built on an ethos of cooperation across the public and private sectors, employers and workers.

“To unlock the brilliance of our leading businesses and entrepreneurs, mobilising these to create good work and economic growth in every part of Britain, and ensure that our communities can take pride in great British industries.”

Ms Reeves touring a textiles firm in Bury


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The healthcare business industry will be revitalised

Ms Reeves said: “If we want to drive up national productivity then it’s not only a few businesses at the leading edge which need to feel the benefits of new technologies and investment.

“Those foundations provide us with security as a society – especially when a crisis hits.

“That calls for industrial strategies for sectors like care which have too often been overlooked, breaking loose of our cycle of long hours, low pay and low productivity, with a new deal for work.”

No plans to call a by-election over Tory defector

Ms Reeves followed the party line and said Labour had no plans to call a by-election.

Speaking in front of the new Labour MP Mr Wakeford she said Brits in his constiuency put a tick by his name.Instead she called on the Government to call a General Election to allow Brits to express how they really feel.

“Christian, like so many others, sees that our country needs Keir Starmer ’s leadership and a Labour government now more than ever,” she said.

Mr Wakeford had welcomed Ms Reeves onto the stage in his first speech as a Labour MP. He told his constituents he will always put their priorities first and he believes in Labour.

Tory defector Christian Wakeford was in attendance


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Ms Reeves echoed Keir Starmer’s plans to ensure every young person leaves school ready for the world of work.

She went a step further and said Labour plans to expand opportunities for school leavers.

The Shadow Chancellor said if Labour was in Government “they’d create apprenticeship opportunities for young people – which could have seen one hundred thousand extra apprenticeships created this year – to drive our economic recovery.”

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