May promises businesses low taxes and “smart regulation”

‘Theresa May will today pledge to oversee a “low tax” economy after we leave the EU as she makes a major Brexit sales pitch to global business leaders. Speaking in New York she will tell the world’s biggest firms they should have confidence to invest in post-Brexit Britain because of her plan to create “one of the most dynamic and business friendly economies in the word”…Britain is already on course to have the lowest business taxes of the world’s G20 countries with the Government’s target to cut corporation tax to 17 per cent by 2020. It is currently at 19 per cent. Her speech doesn’t spell out any new policies but it signals she could go further and slash business taxes further after Brexit to make Britain an even more competitive business hub than EU rivals. In her speech to the Bloomberg Business Forum Mrs May will also sell post-Brexit Britain by laying out a blueprint for “smart regulation” after we’re free of EU red tape.’ – The Sun

  • She pledged the lowest business taxes in the G20 – Daily Telegraph
  • Cutting tax will take on both McDonnell and Brussels – The Sun Says
  • But does she really mean it? – Daily Telegraph Leader
  • Cost of a tank of petrol will hit £70 within weeks, RAC warns – The Sun
  • Women in Innovation Awards recognise business leadership – Greg Clark, Daily Telegraph
  • The Prime Minister rules out a November election – The Sun
  • And says the crackdown on dirty money is working – FT
  • Abramovich accused of money-laundering and links to organised crime – The Sun

The Prime Minister attacks Canada as a “bad deal”, that would be worse than no deal

‘Theresa May has raised the stakes in her fight with Conservative Eurosceptics, saying that a “no deal” Brexit would be better than a Canada-style trade deal that split Northern Ireland from the rest of the UK. Tory Brexiters, including Boris Johnson and Jacob Rees-Mogg, want to throw out Mrs May’s Chequers compromise Brexit plan in favour of a free trade deal, similar to the one struck by the EU with Canada.  But speaking as she travelled to the UN General Assembly in New York, Mrs May suggested that any Canada-style offer from Brussels would only apply to the mainland UK with Northern Ireland carved off as a separate customs territory. Mrs May said her Chequers plan — which proposes a free trade area for goods under the EU rule book — was a viable proposal that addressed the need to keep the Irish border open.  Asked if no deal was better than a Canada plus deal, Mrs May said: “First of all I have always said no deal is better than a bad deal. I think a bad deal would be for example a deal that broke up the United Kingdom. We want to maintain the unity of the United Kingdom.”’ – FT

  • She’s being disingenuous, Davis says – The Times
  • The comments put her on collision course with her Cabinet – Daily Telegraph
  • Chuck Chequers, unite the country, save your career and destroy Labour – Nigel Farage, Daily Telegraph
  • Beginning of the end for Merkel as MPs rebel – Daily Telegraph
  • The German Chancellor demands ‘concrete’ trade deal details in the next eight weeks – The Guardian

>Today: ToryDiary: “Official and significant”. The ERG declares that it will vote against Chequers.

EU judges keep MEPs’ expenses secret

‘European Union judges have spared MEPs from scrutiny by backing the European Parliament’s refusal to disclose details of politicians’ expenses. The European Court of Justice supported the “refusal to grant access to documents relating to subsistence allowances, travel expenses and parliamentary assistance allowances”. It will prevent MEPs, who face elections in the spring, from being required to account for annual allowances. EU judges ruled that it would be a breach of the privacy of individual MEPs if they had to provide the public with details of expenses, which require constituency office addresses, invoices and receipts. “All the documents requested contain information concerning identified natural persons, namely MEPs,” a court statement said. “The mere fact that those personal data are closely linked to public data on those persons does not mean that those data cannot be characterised as personal data.”’ – The Times

  • They should be ashamed – The Times Leader
  • Commissioner threatens press regulation in response to criticism – The Sun
  • No-marks don’t want their life on the gravy train to be exposed – The Sun Says

Rouhani urged to release Zaghari-Ratcliffe

‘Theresa May made a personal appeal to the Iranian president last night on behalf of a jailed British-Iranian charity worker who was imprisoned in Tehran in 2016. The prime minister said she had “serious concerns” about the detention of Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe and appealed for her release in a meeting with Hassan Rouhani on the sidelines of the United Nations general assembly in New York. Mrs Zaghari-Ratcliffe, a mother of one and an employee of a charitable foundation, had gone to visit family in Iran in the spring of 2016. She was accused of spying by Tehran’s Islamist regime and sentenced to five years in jail but vehemently denies the charges. Last month she was released for three days from Evin prison in Tehran, giving her the chance to see her four-year-old daughter, Gabriella, but requests for an extension of this reprieve were denied. In a letter to Mohammad Javad Zarif, Iran’s foreign minister, her husband Richard Ratcliffe said that the short release was a “cruel game.”’ – The Times

Labour 1) Corbyn to promise free childcare for all, including the wealthy

‘Jeremy Corbyn wants to spend £5billion on giving free childcare to every family no matter how rich they are, he announced today. Labour also plans to turn childcare into a graduate profession – forcing increasing numbers of nursery workers to hold degrees…During his party conference speech tomorrow, Mr Corbyn will announce that all children under five will get 30 hours a week of free care under a Labour government. Poorer parents will be able to top up with more free childcare – while even millionaires will pay no more than £4 an hour for a nursery place, the party chief will say…Critics said his plans would end up driving the cost of childcare up by shutting carers out of the industry. Sophie Jarvis of the Adam Smith Institute told The Sun: “For some bizarre reason Corbyn thinks you’ll need a degree to look after kids, but he doesn’t need one to run the country.”’ – The Sun

Labour 2) Starmer, McDonnell and Unite tout conflicting Brexit referendum policies

‘Keir Starmer, shadow Brexit secretary, won a standing ovation at the Labour conference on Tuesday when he said the party had not ruled out the possibility of another referendum on EU membership…John McDonnell, shadow chancellor, had insisted on Monday that any new public vote would only be on the terms of the Brexit deal, and not on whether to reverse the original referendum decision to leave the EU.  Sir Keir’s comments that “nobody is ruling out Remain as an option” was not in a draft of his speech sent to journalists as he stood up to speak to conference delegates, prompting speculation that he was deliberately defying the party leadership.  In a conference debate on the Brexit motion, Sir Keir was contradicted by Steve Turner, assistant general secretary of Unite, the trade union, who said Labour was only offering a “public vote on the terms of our departure” from the EU. Labour is deeply split over Brexit, with many younger supporters in urban areas being enthusiastic Europhiles, while blue-collar backers in the party’s traditional heartlands back Leave.’ – FT

>Today: Robert Halfon’s column: Please, please free me from Brexit Groundhog Day Brexit Groundhog Day Brexit Groundhog Day…


Labour 3) MP calls for General Strike to unseat the Government

‘To enthusiastic cheers from delegates at a Labour conference fringe event, Laura Smith, the MP for Crewe and Nantwich, said: “Comrades, we must topple this cruel and callous Tory government as soon as we can. And if we can’t get a general election we should organise with our brothers and sisters in the trade union [movement] to bring an end to this government with a general strike.” But the shadow business secretary, Rebecca Long-Bailey, said a general strike was not Labour party policy, and the party’s deputy leader, Tom Watson, said the idea was “not particularly helpful”. Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, Long-Bailey put Smith’s call down to over-exuberance.’ – The Guardian

Labour 4) Ryan speaks of ‘fear’ that her Party will get into government

‘Ms Ryan warned that Mr Corbyn won’t be forgiven by British Jews until he shows he is truly sorry for the hurt he has caused them. Labour Friends of Israel Chair Joan Ryan told a reception hat she has felt a “real fear” that her own party might get into government. As the party’s deputy leader Tom Watson looked on, the Enfield North MP accused the party of a “great shame” which can only be overcome when Labour show “remorse, humility and empathy”. She told the LFI reception: “The reaction I encounter is almost universal: it is one of anxiety, hurt and anger. “An incomprehension that our party could have treated a minority community in this country with such disregard, arrogance and contempt.” – The Sun

AA warns of ‘pothole epidemic’

‘The AA has said a “pothole epidemic” caused by the “beast from the east” contributed to the highest number of vehicle breakdown callouts in 15 years. The company said core earnings in the roadside vehicle recovery business fell 17% in the six months to the end of July, due to the increased expenditure and higher costs needed to use third-party garages to house the much higher number ofvehicles that broke down. This contributed to a 65% decline in pre-tax profit, from £80m to £28m. AA shares were down about 4.5% in early trading on Wednesday, the biggest faller on the FTSE 250. Simon Breakwell, the AA chief executive, said: “The first half of [the financial year] has seen exceptional weather conditions, from extreme cold and snow in February and March to the hottest summer in recent memory, with the severe winter also creating a pothole “epidemic” on the UK’s roads.’ – The Guardian