ELECTION COUNTDOWN: 6 DAYS TO GO
Every day until the final week of the election campaign, we ask a business leader to say what policies would entice them to vote for a particular party.
EDMUND TRUELL: CEO, TUNGSTEN CORP
Next week’s General Election promises to be the closest we have seen for many decades, and there are a number of issues I’d like to see the candidates address.
■ We need to encourage private business, particularly small businesses, and free them from unnecessary bureaucracy. A raft of EU inspired legislation has vastly increased the bureaucratic burden for all businesses, but SMEs lack the resources to deal with red tape. I would advocate making all businesses with 100 employees or fewer exempt from employment laws and other bureaucracy.
■ Two emotive areas where we could do better are the NHS and welfare. In the case of the NHS, I believe that we would deliver improved services and better value by privatising the provision of NHS care and saving up to 10 per cent in procurement alone. We could also run our social security system more efficiently by terminating welfare and tax credits, and instead monetising them into a personal hardship safety net similar to Singapore’s Central Provident Fund, a comprehensive savings plan that provides citizens who paid into the fund with healthcare, housing and retirement income.
■ A fourth key area to question is pensions. Norway’s creation of a Sovereign Wealth Fund from oil and gas revenues is one of its defining achievements, and makes Norwegians among the wealthiest people in the world. We could achieve something similar by pooling the plethora of public pension schemes into a single fund, which could then invest in UK infrastructure and housing, rather than relying on foreign funds to invest in large projects that are critical to UK growth and development.
■ Finally, I would like to see the building of new homes outside of cities banned, as Switzerland has done, reducing pressure on our countryside.
Visit our General Election poll tracker to see how the polls changed in the build-up to election day.