'I’ve always been a realist who accepts we face challenges' - Rachel Maclean's Westminster diary - The Redditch Standard

'I’ve always been a realist who accepts we face challenges' - Rachel Maclean's Westminster diary

Redditch Editorial 30th Sep, 2023   0

DURING my time as your MP, I found there’s an increasing tendency in our political debate to not be able to accept that more than one thing can be possible at the same time.

What I mean by that is it seems we can’t welcome the massively improved and revised economic growth figures because challenges still remain and persist.

I’ve always been a realist who accepts we face challenges, but I’m also able to look at the good things that are happening at the same time.

The two things aren’t mutually exclusively. That’s how I look at the economy.

We can welcome the fact our economy has grown more quickly than Germany, France and Italy as we emerged from the pandemic, whilst at the same time accept challenges remain that need tackling – and this Government is making the tough but necessary decisions to do so.

I saw that realism I’ve talked about when I recently met with local businesses which are part of the driving force behind the UK’s economic growth.

There are hundreds of more businesses in our constituency than when I was first elected. That drives economic growth and creates good paying jobs for local people.

This has contributed to the fact that, over the past year, the number of claimants out of work in our constituency has fallen. And new figures from the ONS show that, in the three months to July 2023, wages in Redditch outstripped inflation.

You of course won’t hear any of this from the opposition parties who continue to talk down Redditch and the UK, purely for completely cynical political purposes.

Here are some facts for the naysayers. The International Monetary Fund has also revised up its forecast for UK economic growth in 2023 – more than any other country.

The UK economy has grown faster than France, Japan and Italy since 2010. And, in the last two years, we have had the fastest growth of the G7 major economies.

There’s always more to do, but the Government’s plan to grow the economy and halve inflation is working.

We must stay the course.


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