Letter: Spreading wealth

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Sir: The Trade and Industry Secretary, Stephen Byers, suggests that wealth creation is more important than wealth redistribution, as if the two objectives were incompatible ("We are wealth creators now, says Labour", 2 February).

In reality, redistribution assists the creation of new wealth. It increases the power of poor people to spend (creating income and employment for others) and to save and invest. It helps them to rise in society and make fuller use of their natural ability, and ensures that society's rulers and managers are recruited from a wider spectrum of talent.

Finally, a more equal society can hope for long-term savings in public spending on the many social problems which are created or aggravated by inequality, especially in health, housing, employment, welfare dependency and law and order.


London SW9