The Speaker
Wednesday, 29 May 2024 – 23:08

Queen’s Speech sets out government’s agenda

The government’s agenda was set out in the Queen’s Speech on Thursday.

The speech included seven bills on Brexit, with the government’s ‘priority’ being to ensure the UK leaves the European Union by 31 January 2020.

The speech also announced a big NHS funding pledge, in which the government says it will enshrine in law a commitment to provide an extra £33.9bn per year to the National Health Service by 2023/24.

Other key policies in the speech included the implementing of a ‘points-based’ immigration system, the removal of hospital car parking charges “for those in greatest need” and cuts to business rates for thousands of retailers and restaurants in England and Wales.

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said the speech was ‘notable for what’s not in it’, such as policies to change Universal Credit. He also claimed that many of the announcements mimicked the “language of Labour policy but without the substance”.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson told the Commons that “a new golden age for this United Kingdom is now within reach”. He also paid tribute to the Labour leader, noting that his time on the front bench as leader of the opposition was coming to a close. Mr Johnson told the House of Commons, ‘Our personal relations have always been excellent.’ He added, ‘I have never doubted that the right honourable gentleman’s beliefs are deeply held and his sincerity is to be admired.’

The 66th Queen’s Speech unusually came just weeks after the last one, which was held back in October before the election was called.

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