‘Modern’ Industrial Strategy, Same Old Risks

Matthew Lesh writes for City AM

IEA Director of Public Policy and Communications Matthew Lesh has written for City AM discussing Shadow Chancellor Rachel Reeves’ Mais Lecture in which she outlined the importance of planning reform and embrace ‘modern industrial policy’.

Matthew wrote:

“There was much to like about the speech…Reeves rightly focuses on the urgent need for ‘supply side reform’ and describes the planning system as ‘the single greatest obstacle to our economic success.’ Not only is the inability to build homes a barrier to homeownership. It also feeds broader economic dysfunction…

“Beyond these bright sparks, however, Reeves’ economic agenda should raise eyebrows…

“Reeves’ vision is centred on a ‘modern industrial policy’. She says this won’t mean propping up uncompetitive industries like in the past but instead working in ‘genuine partnership with business’ to identify ‘critical’ future industries ‘based on our broad strengths’. It will be smart and strategic, she insists.

“This is reminiscent of the claim that ‘real’ socialism has never been tried – that every previous case of disaster should be ignored because things will be different next time. Reeves’ exact approach has been tried and failed almost every time for predictable reasons.”

Read Matthew’s full piece here.