Monday 23 April 2012
Boris Johnson was in Leadenhall Market today for the annual St. George’s Day celebrations and gave a speech setting out how he will support small businesses and create more than 200,000 jobs over the next four years.
Boris Johnson said: “With ten days to go, I ask Londoners at this election a simple question: who do you trust to keep their promises and deliver the jobs and growth that London needs to move forward?
“Londoners have been through tough economic times. That’s why I fought London’s corner and secured an extra £70m from the Budget to invest in growing our economy. That’s money we will use to help small businesses – and it’s money that we do not need to raise from the council tax.
“We will use this to make up to £50m available for loans to small businesses finding it tough getting finance from the banks. Helping small businesses in this way is the most effective thing we can do to help them expand and employ more people.
“We’ll put in £25m we got from the Treasury, pull in £10m from European funds and get commitments from the private sector to invest the remaining £15m in this revolving fund. It will be set up in such a way that it replenishes itself over time – using the loan repayments to go back into the pot and lent out to help more small businesses.
“This would provide average loans of around £100,000 for each company, and could help up to 500 London based small companies expand. Even if each company only creates 2 extra jobs, that’s 1,000 jobs. 4 jobs per company would be 2,000 jobs.
“The only way to create jobs is to invest – in transport, housing and London’s small businesses.
“If we look at this combined programme of investment – in housing; transport; and the Olympics sites – we calculate that we will generate 200,000 new jobs over the next four years. To say nothing of the additional boost those improvements will make to London’s global competitiveness.
“We are talking about Crossrail and the Tube upgrades, and a housing programme and regeneration schemes that will bring together account for about 200,000 jobs: The Mayoral Development Corporation; The Royal Docks Enterprise Zone; The arc of opportunity south and east of the Olympic Park. And all the investment we are making in town centres and high streets from Croydon to Tottenham, from Bromley to Harrow
“We are seeing incredible things starting to happen in Tech City and the area known as Silicon Roundabout. But there has never been a better moment City Hall to take a strategic lead. Huge sums are now being invested in Silvertown Quays, and then there is all the potential of Vauxhall Nine Elms Battersea where we are putting in two new stations for the Northern line.
“But this investment is at risk if Ken Livingstone wins. He has already made spending commitments worth almost £3bn – with absolutely no indication as to how he will pay for them. One thing is clear – he knows he will have to either massively increase council tax, or start to raid other City Hall funds that are earmarked for investment in jobs. That would put this funding for small businesses at risk at the worst possible time.
“And if we can get all of that right then the natural genius of Londoners will do the rest. We sell tea to China, TV aerials to Korea, and now cake to France. That is the dynamism of Londoners. That is what we want to encourage. That’s the manifesto for growth, jobs and investment on which I am standing.
“This is what I can do if spared the electoral reaper next Thursday. Help Londoners out of tough economic times through securing the best deal from the Government to invest in London’s infrastructure; offer practical policies to support our small businesses; and create up to 200,00 new jobs.”
Boris Johnson’s 9 point plan for a Greater London:
1. Cutting waste at City Hall – freeing up £3.5 billion for services
2. Putting £445 back in your pocket by freezing the Mayoral share of council tax and cutting it by at least 10% if re-elected
3. Creating 200,000 new jobs over the next four years
4. Making our streets and homes safer with1,000 more police on the beat
5. Restoring 300 acres of green space and planting 20,000 street trees
6. Investing £221 million to transform local high streets, supporting small businesses
7. Ensuring a true Olympic legacy – 11,000 new homes and 10,000 new jobs
8. Reducing Tube delays 30% by 2015. Building Crossrail and orbital rail to link our suburbs. Extending the Bike Hire scheme
9. Securing a better deal for London from No 10
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