POLITICS

Ukip Manifesto Will Pledge To Abolish Income Tax For 'Blue Collar' Low Earners

21/08/2014 07:59 BST | Updated 21/08/2014 12:59 BST

Ukip will go into the general election next year promising to abolish income tax for low earners, in its "blue collar platform" manifesto.

The party's policy unit chief, MEP Tim Akers, said the move was intended to make peoples' lives "easier and simpler".

The party has been trying to set out its a wider range of positions and spokespeople ahead of the general election when it hopes to win its first Westminster seats.

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It triumphed in the May's European Parliament election, but being criticised for relying too heavily on the personality of party leader Nigel Farage.

The new manifesto is expected to be completely different to the party's 2010 effort.

Farage has said that manifesto, which pledged to scrap the nuclear Trident missile system, ban the burkha in public buildings and require taxi drivers to wear uniforms, was "drivel".

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Ukip will pledge to abolish income tax for low earners at the next general election

The announcement about income tax was made by Aker in an interview with Prospect magazine.

"We’re beyond left-right, authoritarian-libertarian,” he told the magazine.

“Our people want to know how we’re going to make their lives easier, simpler and how they can just get on and feel more comfortable.

"That’s it. It’s a blue-collar platform, but for people that want to aspire to achieve absolutely anything."

“We want to take low earners out of income tax altogether. No tax on the minimum wage.”

Aker told the magazine that national insurance contributions will not be reduced but he said the manifesto would promise to increase the point at which the 40p rate income tax begins to £45,000 a year.

He said this would “stop George Osborne’s fiscal drag for middle earners.”

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In the interview, he listed other policies that would likely appeal to eurosceptic voters it was targeting, adding that foreign aid was an "obvious target" for cuts and the Department for Energy & Climate Change could be shrunk.

He also estimated the Climate Change Act, which Ukip is committed to abolishing, costs Britain £18 billion a year.

Aker also said a Ukip government - which remains an extremely unlikely prospect - would establish a Veterans Department for ex-members of the armed forces.

He added the party was "firmly against" the bedroom tax and the manifesto will say migrants cannot be eligible for any welfare benefits until they pay tax and national insurance for five years.


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