Laura Sharman 25 November 2019

Tories promise cash boost for infrastructure and skills

A Conservative Government would deliver record investments in infrastructure, childcare and skills, according to the party’s manifesto.

Launching the manifesto over the weekend, Boris Johnson pledged more than £4bn investment in local transport schemes, with £2bn earmarked for the country’s biggest ever pothole-filling programme.

Other spending commitments include £3bn for a new National Skills Fund, £1bn to increase the availability of after school and holiday childcare, and £6.3bn on energy efficiency measures.

A £3.8bn Social Housing Decarbonisation Scheme will focus on improving the insulation provided in two million social homes.

A long-term budget for the NHS has also been promised to help appoint 50,000 more nurses and build 40 new hospitals over 10 years.

However, the manifesto has been criticised for a lack of detail on tackling the social care crisis.

Don Peebles, head of policy and technical at CIPFA, said: 'The party’s pledges do not reflect the current stress on public services and lack the necessary funding to set services back on solid fiscal ground.

'The manifesto also fails to follow through on the party’s previous promises to tackle social care. The proposed £5bn in social care funding is merely a short-term package that fails to address the care crisis and limits councils’ ability to adequately plan for the long-term.'

Mr Johnson also pledged to reach net-zero by 2050 and implement a ban on exporting plastic waste outside the OECD.

The Conservatives have also pledged not to raise the rate of income tax, VAT or National Insurance through a ‘Triple Tax Lock’.

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