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Lib Dem Conference 2011: Cable calls for ‘stability, stimulus and solidarity’

  • 19/09/2011
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Business secretary Vince Cable today called for a policy of “stability, stimulus and solidarity” to aid Britain’s financial recovery.

Addressing the Liberal Democrat conference in Birmingham, Cable advocated lending to businesses, attacked banks, and called for more financial protection for consumers.

Cable, who has previously appeared at odds with Conservative ministers over banking and economic recovery, today threw his weight behind government cuts.

He said the deficit reduction plan is necessary and not ideological.

“The progressive left agendas of centre-left parties cannot be delivered by bankrupt governments,” he said.

However, Cable said he is not convinced reducing taxes for the rich will drive up British revenues, and pledged his support for the proposal to lift the tax free earnings limit to £12,000 per year.

Referring to the debate over cutting the 50p tax rate, he said he does not believe cutting tax for the rich will bring businessmen “rushing back to pay more tax” from “Monaco or some other bolthole”.

Cable also reiterated his support for tackling bonus culture and excessive executive pay in big businesses, promising to narrow income inequality.

Small businesses are the real wealth and job creators, Cable said.

He added businesses and banking are currently “at odds” and called for “steady lending growth” and an end to “feast and famine” in business lending.

Cable said the Bank of England must also reform its policies linked to bank lending.

The business secretary restated his support for the Vickers report into banking, calling for a separation of retail and investment banking and protection for consumers from “exploding financial weapons of mass destruction”.

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