Published: Fri, April 21, 2017
Global Media | By Meredith Barber

John McDonnell: Tax burden will fall on those earning £70000 or more

John McDonnell: Tax burden will fall on those earning £70000 or more

Shadow foreign secretary Emily Thornberry insisted Labour will not "pick off" groups of high earners in its tax plans as she appeared to distance herself from suggestions that people on more than £70,000 face paying more under the party.

Asked whether he was proposing that people in that income bracket pay more tax, Mr McDonnell was coy: "That's not what we've said".

Hopefully Jeremy Corbyn's first campaign speech this morning can provide some much needed clarity on Labour's policies - not least to the party's frontbench.

Mark Giddens, a partner at accountants UHY Hacker Young, said: "These proposals will hit many taxpayers who already see themselves as the 'squeezed middle", who already feel the pinch from taxes and the cost of housing.

Speaking on the BBC's Today Programme, McDonnell said Labour wanted to ensure a "fair taxation system".

The shadow chancellor said individuals bringing in more than the sum are "roughly defined" as being able to contribute a greater amount.

Mr McDonnell said middle and low earners were "being hit very hard" with a combination of income tax rises and "attempts by this government to increase National Insurance payments on the self-employed".

Mr McDonnell said Labour would go into the campaign promising to maintain some access to the EU's single market while maximising the benefits the United Kingdom now enjoys as part of the bloc's customs union.

'It will be a pay ratio.

'I don't think this election is about Brexit, ' he said.

"Those on the lowest incomes have seen some big, and in particularly are going to see some big cuts in benefits, tax credits and so on are coming down very fast".

"We are seeing inflation increasing - we are seeing wages stagnate and we are seeing people in heavy debt as a result of that".

He said a future Labour government would seek "a managed and fair immigration system that takes into account the needs of our economy".

On future customs arrangements, Mr McDonnell said: 'We want to maximise the benefits that we now get from the customs union - that does not necessarily mean full membership of the customs union'.

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