Guernsey Press

Capitalise on migration of wealth if Labour win

THE UK General Election awaits next week. While in these febrile times of great feelings of self-entitlement and psephological promiscuity, opinion polls should be read with a dose of healthy scepticism, even with a massive application of a large margin for error all the signs are leading to the UK waking up a week on Friday to a record majority for the Labour Party.


Moreover, glossing over what is the Labour definition of ‘working people’, the freedom that such a super-majority brings will virtually certainly lead to immediate and substantial increases in at least capital gains tax, corporation tax and inheritance tax. There is also the distinct possibility of a pandering to the socialist politics of envy with something around a wealth tax.

The Starmer/Reeves axis is right in stating that true, enduring governmental income only comes from growing the economy, but it will take a couple of years at least for any policies in that direction to yield hoped-for results and the voracious maw of public spending coupled with the earlier-than-expected arrival of the Glorious Twelfth, as far as UK resident high net worth individuals are concerned, will lead to immediate increases in taxation, especially for the wealthy.

All of this will result, as certainly as night follows day, in an immediate increase in the migration of capital and people from the UK to, inter alia, the Crown Dependencies. It would be reassuring to know that our island is match-fit to be able successfully to rise to the challenge, defeat our competitors and meet such enquiries for taking up residence with positive outcomes. These immigrants will bring enhanced income for Guernsey and a larger capital base. The trickle-down effect will benefit everyone on our island. Perhaps we could hear from our elected representatives as to what they are doing to respond quickly to the challenge.

From widening and deepening the population of open market housing to an immediate improvement in our transport infrastructure, (e.g. paying more to keep our airport open for longer to preclude many flight cancellations) our island must take urgent action to maximise the advantage of this once-in-a-generation opportunity rather than, in the future, wonder why our global competitors caught the boat that sailed while we just waved it goodbye.



Guernsey Politics & Economics Group