McDonnell ramps up war on business with vow to ‘rewrite the rules of our economy’


LABOUR Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell ramped up his war on business yesterday — sparking warnings that companies will flee Britain and cut jobs if his party seizes power.

Mr McDonnell vowed to “rewrite the rules of our economy” and slap businesses with a barrage of new red tape.

 Labour's John McDonnell has sparked fears successful companies will flee Britain as he ramped up his war on business
Labour’s John McDonnell has sparked fears successful companies will flee Britain as he ramped up his war on businessCredit: London News Pictures

He said “no one deserves” to be a billionaire and announced plans to cap pay, seize shares and boot some companies off the London Stock Exchange.

But entrepreneurs and business bosses lashed out at his radical plans, warning they would drive successful companies out of Britain.

Under the hard-left blueprint, pay will be capped at £350,000 for those working in the private sector or for company bosses bidding for public sector contracts.

Big companies will be told to put workers and customers on their boards and give shares to staff.

Companies that do not meet new eco targets will be kicked off the London Stock Exchange.

Announcing his plans in central London, Mr McDonnell said: ­“Labour will rewrite the rules of our economy. We believe that a new model of business is needed.”

But business chiefs criticised the plans. Edwin Morgan, director of policy at the Institute of Directors, said: “These ideas could give global investors cold feet and that could mean fewer jobs down the line.”

He said Britain was seen worldwide as a great place to do business and Labour’s plans risked “throwing the baby out with the bathwater”.

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Phones4u founder John Caudwell said he and other entrepreneurs were considering leaving the country if Jeremy Corbyn took power.

Mr Caudwell — who started as an apprentice and set up his business from scratch — told the BBC: “From the days where I lived in a caravan on my mother’s lawn and we were cooking beans on toast on the Calor gas stove, from those days I have always wanted to be successful.

“And I don’t know how a society can improve by trying to disincentivise people from becoming wealthy and creating jobs.

“The more billionaires, the more industry and jobs we create, the more the working man will get an increase in wages. People are leaving the UK.

“There’s a whole raft of not just billionaires but wealthy people who are already enquiring about Monaco properties and properties in other places in the world.”

He added: “I will not stay in a country that despises wealth ­creation, despises success and ­creates an envy against people.”

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The row came as former Labour Shadow Chancellor Chris Leslie — who quit the party earlier this year — demanded Labour “come clean” and admit they would raise taxes for ordinary working people.

The Institute for Fiscal Studies has warned that Mr Corbyn’s plans to increase income tax will only raise about £3billion a year — only a tiny slice of what Labour has promised to spend.

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