Published:

Sunak ‘plans Brexit tax cuts’ to save the economy

“Taxes and red tape will be slashed in towns and cities across the country next year, under government plans for a post-Brexit and post-coronavirus ­economic revolution. Rishi Sunak, the Chancellor, is preparing to introduce sweeping tax cuts and an overhaul of planning laws in up to 10 new “freeports” within a year of the UK becoming fully independent from the European Union in December, The Telegraph can reveal. The disclosure comes as Michael Gove declares the reasons for Brexit are “stronger than ever”, in a rebuke to Michel Barnier, the EU’s chief negotiator, who last week said he saw no “added value” from leaving the bloc… Ministers are dramatically stepping up plans for the end of the transition period, with less than six months until the UK leaves the EU’s customs union and the single market.” – Sunday Telegraph

  • ‘Bonfire of red tape’ expected – Mail on Sunday
  • White‑collar staff face silent cull as firms cut back – Sunday Times
  • Gauke: tax rises and cuts only way to pay for Covid-19 – The Observer
  • Primark won’t take Chancellor’s £30m – Sunday Times

Transport:

Analysis:

  • Sunak swoops to save Boris Johnson from a holy mess – Tim Shipman, Sunday Times

Comment:

  • Sunak is borrowing his way out of this crisis, but we’ll all have to pay it back – David Gauke, The Observer
  • It’s our patriotic duty to eat, drink, and shop – Theresa Villiers MP, Sun on Sunday
  • Workers’ rights will count for little when there’s no work – Daniel Hannan, Sunday Telegraph
  • The liberal Left now view white British workers as their enemy – Dan Hodges, Mail on Sunday

>Today: ToryDiary: Polling snapshot. How Johnson reinvented the Conservatives after they had recently formed governments three times

BBC facing £1bn crisis as ministers ‘set to push ahead with decriminalising licence fee’

“The BBC is facing a black hole in its finances after government sources suggested that it will push ahead with decriminalisation of the licence fee. The move comes as the results of a consultation into whether the licence fee should remain as an enforceable tax on every household with a television licence are due to be published shortly. The Corporation estimates that it will lose £1 billion in five years as a result of not being able to threaten non-payers with criminal action for the £157.50 annual charge. However, with thousands joining a Defund the BBC campaign over allegations that its political coverage is biassed, critics suggest the cost could be even greater. A Downing Street source confirmed decriminalisation “is still on the agenda” and a minister has told the Sunday Express “this will happen.”” – Sunday Express

No-deal Brexit border force ‘to cost £700m’

“Ministers are to spend more than £700m beefing up border security, and will launch a public information campaign tomorrow to get people ready for new Brexit rules from January. Michael Gove is spending the money on new border guards, IT systems and other infrastructure at Dover and other ports of entry, as the UK prepares for the possibility of a no-deal departure. A source said: “It’s a big package of infrastructure, technology and personnel.” The government is planning an ad campaign to ensure businesses and tourists are ready for regulations that will kick in after the Brexit transition phase ends on December 31. Brexit talks are deadlocked, despite face-to-face meetings of both sides’ chief negotiators last week.” – Sunday Times

  • Vast Brexit customs clearance centre to be built in Kent – The Observer
  • ‘Senior Brexiteers’ warn that Withdrawal Agreement amount to ‘poison pill’… – Sunday Telegraph
  • …which ‘could undermine sovereignty and cost £165bn’ – Sunday Express
  • Brits to stump up for £16m revamp of EU Parliament – Sun on Sunday

Michael Gove: Outside the EU, a bright future awaits Britain

“Taking back control of the money we send to Brussels means we can spend it on our priorities: investing in the NHS, spreading opportunity more equally across the UK and strengthening our Union. We can build a trading relationship with our European neighbours that serves all our interests and develop new economic partnerships across the world. The deal the Prime Minister struck last year, and which the country backed in the general election, ensured we left the EU in January and means we can look forward with confidence to the end of the transition period on December 31. But, just like a house move, we need to make sure all the practical arrangements for our new future are in place.” – Sunday Telegraph

  • We must declare to the world that Britain is open for business – Priti Patel, Sun on Sunday

Johnson warned to remove Huawei components from UK’s 5G network ‘without delay’

“Boris Johnson was warned to remove Chinese tech giant Huawei’s components from the UK 5G network “without delay”. The Government, which agreed in January the firm could supply non-“core” elements, will outline its U-turn after a National Security Council meeting this week. Tory rebels, who include Iain Duncan Smith, have indicated they could live with a 2025 exit date, but want a timetable. The move, which comes amid continuing fears that Huawei is a potential national security danger, could begin this year. US sanctions mean Huawei cannot use American components, which will mean the firm would have to use untrusted technology. Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden has said the US action will hamper Huawei’s ability to act as a 5G network provider.” – Sun on Sunday

  • Firm urges Britain: Don’t drop us till after next election – Sunday Times
  • Ministers fear China will blitz UK with a devastating ‘cyber 9/11’ – Mail on Sunday
  • UK would take ‘golden shares’ in Chinese-owned nuclear companies – Sunday Telegraph

Comment:

  • Nobody should be surprised about China’s bullying tactics – David Davis, Sun on Sunday

Thousands of British troops to be ‘compensated’ for Sturgeon tax hikes

“Whitehall is having to step in to protect Scottish Armed Forces personnel from “SNP tax hikes”. The Ministry of Defence (MoD) has agreed to permanently reimburse 7,000 armed forces personnel who have been subject to higher tax rates in Scotland after an initial two year pilot. An annual payment will now be permanently provided to serving personnel earning £28,443 or more a year with an average annual payment of £850. Mitigation of between £12 and £2,200 will be paid, with payments grossed up to take account of income tax and national insurance. This would be provided regardless of where the soldiers are deployed or where their families are based, the MoD said. It comes after concerns were raised by the department that the Scottish Government tax rates, which are higher than in England, could create low morale.” – Sunday Express

Patel ‘believes fear of being called racist’ stopped police from tackling ‘slave’ sweatshops

“The Home Secretary is understood to think that ‘cultural sensitivities’ prevented the police from tackling Leicester’s ‘slave’ sweatshops. Priti Patel is said to have raised concerns behind closed doors that government agencies turned a blind eye to the factories where staff were paid less than the minimum wage and worked in poor conditions, as reported by The Sunday Times. Ms Patel is thought to now be considering new laws on modern slavery after fears the current legislation is no ‘fit for purpose’. A source close to the Home Secretary told the newspaper: ‘This scandal has been hiding in plain sight and there are concerns cultural sensitivities could be in part to blame for why these appalling working practices haven’t been investigated.'” – Mail on Sunday

  • Home secretary believes police and council turned a blind eye – Sunday Times

More:

  • Deportation promise ‘thrown into doubt’ by new failures – Mail on Sunday

Electoral Commission can’t be allowed to ‘mark its own homework’, says Tory chairman

“Conservatives have raised “serious concerns” about the leadership and accountability of the elections watchdog after its chief executive confirmed plans to hand itself powers to prosecute parties and campaign groups. In a highly unusual intervention, Amanda Milling, co-chairman of the Conservative Party and Cabinet minister, warned that the Electoral Commission should drop the proposals, as she hit out at the body’s “botched handling” of recent cases. The move puts Boris Johnson’s Government on a major collision course with the watchdog, as it attempts to hand itself new powers. Senior Tories insist that the body is “not trusted to be impartial” based on previous investigations and past comments by board members and Louise Edwards, its director of regulation, who is leading the work.” – Sunday Telegraph

Prime Minister ‘plans radical shake-up of NHS’ in bid to regain more direct control

“Boris Johnson is planning a radical and politically risky reorganisation of the NHS amid government frustration at the health service’s chief executive, Simon Stevens, the Guardian has learned. The prime minister has set up a taskforce to devise plans for how ministers can regain much of the direct control over the NHS they lost in 2012 under a controversial shake-up masterminded by Andrew Lansley, the then coalition government health secretary. The prime minister’s health and social care taskforce – made up of senior civil servants and advisers from Downing Street, the Treasury and the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) – is drawing up proposals that would restrict NHS England’s operational independence and the freedom Stevens has to run the service.” – The Observer

  • Johnson’s obesity blitz ‘thrown into chaos’ by Sunak’s half-price meal deal – Sun on Sunday
  • Hancock ‘sued over care home deaths’ – Sunday Times
  • Crisis leaves patients facing two‑year wait for new knees and hips – Sunday Times

Comment:

  • There’s no such thing as a free social care system – Robert Colvile, Sunday Times

>Today: Richard Walton in Comment: The Government must act to prevent Coronavirus fraud

Rumour that Cummings will ‘wield axe’ over Cabinet ‘leakers’ Truss, Wallace, and Buckland

“Cabinet Ministers suspected of leaking to the media are at the top of Boris Johnson’s hit-list in his next reshuffle, as adviser Dominic Cummings increasingly flexes his political muscles. International Trade Secretary Liz Truss, Defence Secretary Ben Wallace and Justice Secretary Robert Buckland are all nervous about their chances of staying in the Cabinet after the reshuffle, which is expected in the autumn. The rumoured appearance in No 10 of a whiteboard used to write out the names of those on the move has not helped to calm nerves. Friends of Ms Truss are feeling particularly pessimistic about her career prospects after she was called in to No 10 on Thursday morning for what one source described as ‘a total b******ing’ by Mr Cummings.” – Mail on Sunday

Labour boycotts Facebook ‘to back Black Lives Matter’…

“Sir Keir Starmer, the Labour leader, has launched a “complete boycott” of party advertising on Facebook in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement. Labour spent more than £1.2m on advertisements on the social media giant during last year’s general election. However, the firm has been accused of failing to do enough to remove hate speech and racist conspiracy theories following the death of George Floyd, the black man killed by police in Minnesota in May. According to Stop Hate for Profit, the American campaign behind the boycott, 98% of Facebook’s $70bn (£55bn) in revenue last year came from advertising. Labour made the decision to join the likes of Coca-Cola, Lego and Adidas in suspending all adverts on the site last week, although it has not been announced publicly.” – Sunday Times

  • Competent, likeable, decisive: Starmer beating Johnson ‘on all counts’ – The Observer

More:

  • Labour tax raid ‘would cost hard-working Brits around £2,500 a year’ – Sun on Sunday
  • Brown advised Labour to stop comeback of ‘useless’ Ed Miliband – Sunday Times

>Yesterday: ToryDiary: The “equalities” industry has entrenched division. It must be swept away.

…and calls for immediate publication of inquiry into Patel bullying claims

“An inquiry into allegations that the home secretary, Priti Patel, bullied staff must be published immediately amid claims the inquiry’s chief is resisting pressure from Downing Street to exonerate her, Labour has said. The shadow home secretary, Nick Thomas-Symonds, wrote to the Cabinet Office minister, Michael Gove, on Saturday, saying the delay in publishing the findings is unacceptable. A Cabinet Office investigation was launched in March following claims that Patel, who denies all the allegations, mistreated staff and clashed with senior officials in three departments, including in her current role as home secretary. It is understood that the report has been completed.” – The Observer

  • Starmer urged to discipline 16 MPs for ‘consistently failing’ pro-Israel constituents – Sunday Express
  • Labour frontbencher forced to apologise for second time in a month – Sunday Times

>Yesterday: Book Reviews: Bevin, the working-class John Bull who stood up to Stalin and has no successors in today’s Labour Party

Tory MPs join campaign to halt the £300m sale of Newcastle United to Saudis

“Football-loving MPs have mounted a campaign to halt the £300million sale of Newcastle United to oil-rich Saudis. They want the Premier League to block it over human rights abuses, and what they see as “blatant piracy” of our national game. Footie chiefs are considering whether to let the Saudi Arabia ­Public Investment Fund, chaired by Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman, buy an 80 per cent stake in the Toon. Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab has listed 20 Saudis who committed “the gravest human rights violations”… Tory Mike Wood, vice chair of the all-party group for football, said: “It’s hard to see how the Investment Fund meets any fit and proper person test.”” – Sun on Sunday

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