General election 2017: Labour manifesto draft leaked

Media captionBBC political correspondent Chris Mason takes a look at what’s in the leaked draft Labour manifesto

A draft of Labour’s general election manifesto has been leaked, including plans to nationalise parts of the energy industry and scrap tuition fees.

The BBC has seen a copy of the document, which is due to be formally signed off on Thursday.

It contains policies on nationalising railways and renewing the Trident weapons system and suggests Labour will not leave the EU without a deal.

Labour would not comment on the leak but the Tories called it “a shambles”.

According to the draft, Labour would:

  • Spend an extra £8bn on social care over the next Parliament
  • Refuse to make “false promises” on immigration
  • Stress that any leader should be “extremely cautious” about using Trident nuclear weapons, which leader Jeremy Corbyn opposes
  • Strengthen trade union rights – including increased unionisation across the workforce and repealing last year’s Trade Union Act
  • Scrap the public sector pay cap and reintroduce national pay bargaining
  • Ban so-called “zero hours” contracts
  • Increase income tax for the highest earning 5% to raise an extra £6bn for the NHS
  • Build at least 100,000 council and housing association houses a year
  • Reserve 4,000 homes for rough sleepers

On energy, Labour would have at least one publicly-owned supplier in every region of the country, with the government controlling the transmission and distribution grids.

First it would introduce an “immediate emergency price cap” of £1,000 a year.

The manifesto still has to be approved by around 80 Labour figures, including the shadow cabinet and the party’s National Executive Committee.

The final version will form the foundation of Labour’s pitch to voters on the 8 June general election.

A spokesman for Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said: “We do not comment on leaks. We will announce our policies in our manifesto, which is our plan to transform Britain for the many, not the few.”


Analysis by BBC political correspondent Chris Mason

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Reuters

The publication of a manifesto is meant to be a huge set-piece moment for any party.

A moment that is choreographed, as what could become their governing manual is published with fanfare.

Instead, on the eve of the draft being formally signed off, a series of leaks, which tell their own story, about the divisions and lack of discipline within a party just four weeks from polling day.

Remember, the final document hasn’t yet been signed off.

But there is meaty stuff in this, which some people will delight in seeing a big party advocate at a general election.

Others will label it a throwback to a different political era.


Many of the policies have been previously announced by Labour or were proposed by Mr Corbyn during his successful leadership campaign.

These include banning fracking, and the draft manifesto also says nuclear power would continue to be supported.

On welfare, Labour says it would scrap benefit sanctions and the so-called “bedroom tax” and restore housing benefit for people aged under 21.

The triple lock protecting the state pension would be maintained, and the retirement age would not increase beyond 66.

Image caption

The draft manifesto has yet to be signed off

The draft was initially leaked to the Mirror and the Daily Telegraph.

A Conservative spokesman said: “This is a total shambles. Jeremy Corbyn’s plans to unleash chaos on Britain have been revealed.

“The commitments in this dossier will rack up tens of billions of extra borrowing for our families and will put Brexit negotiations at risk.”

In other general election news, the Conservatives are pledging to continue meeting the Nato target of spending 2% of GDP on defence.

Prime Minister Theresa May said she was also extending by two years a pledge to increase the defence budget by at least 0.5% above inflation annually.

Labour is also promising to meet the 2% Nato pledge.

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