Prime Minister David Cameron pledges to improve incomes and job prospects during visit to Ipswich

David Cameron at Ransomes Jacobsen

David Cameron at Ransomes Jacobsen - Credit: Archant

Prime Minister David Cameron came to Ipswich to outline his vision of a high-salary, high-skilled economy with full employment.

But he warned there was still some way to go before the recovery from the recession was complete and told members of staff at Ransomes Jacobsen that the Government needed to “stick with” the current economic policy.

He accused Labour critics of trying to “talk down the economy” by suggesting that the 1.75 million jobs created under the coalition Government were dominated by low-quality or zero-hours positions.

More than nine out of 10 jobs created over the last year were full-time, he pointed out.

Mr Cameron said: “After a tough few years, we have a good record of getting people into work – 1,000 jobs every day this Government has been in office. We’ve created more jobs here in Britain than the rest of the European Union combined.

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“I hope people will stick with this plan. We haven’t solved all our country’s economic problems, but the plan is working. We are getting Britain back to work and increasingly with those jobs people can see a better living standard, better security for themselves and their families.”

The premier outlined five key Conservative commitments for the next Parliament:

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n Continue getting British people back to work by controlling immigration and delivering a robust welfare system for EU migrants;

n Encourage enterprise and support small business, keeping jobs taxes low and cutting red tape;

n Invest in infrastructure to attract business and good jobs across the whole of the UK;

n Reward work, help people into a job and lower the benefit cap;

n To create three million new apprenticeships.

Mr Cameron said the minimum wage should be regularly uprated and it was right that it was set by an independent body.

It had recently gone up to £6.50 and he would like to see it go up to £7 an hour.

“In terms of how you help people on low pay, the best thing you can do is cut their taxes. That is why it is our ambition that you should be able to earn £12,500 before you pay any income tax at all.

“If you do that you take most people earning minimum wage out of tax altogether. One of the things we need to do – and you are doing it in this business – is make sure the jobs you are creating are skilled jobs, are full time jobs which attract a good salary.”

He was scornful of claims that new jobs were not of high quality.

“This idea that all jobs created in Britain over the last four years have been low paid, zero hours contracts are simply not true.

“Nine out of 10 in the last year are full time jobs, two-thirds since I became Prime Minister are high-skilled and attracting high salaries.

“And for those people who are on low salaries we are helping by taking them out of income tax. That is a good record.

“Do I think we have solved Britain’s economic problems? Of course not. We have a lot more to do to make this economy a success story but we have created 1,000 jobs for every day this government has been in office.”

The Prime Minister said this region had a crucial role to play in providing prosperity for the rest of the country. “I am here today because Norfolk and Suffolk, and East Anglia as a whole, are a vital part of our economy and it’s a very successful part of our economy,” he said.

“When you think that almost a quarter of million jobs have been created over the last four-and-a-half years, Ben (Gummer) and Peter (Aldous) play an absolutely crucial role in promoting that economic plan.

“I think Ben has stood up very effectively for Ipswich. I can’t think of any other Ipswich MP who has managed to get the whole of the cabinet to come here and he has stood up for local people.”

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