Theresa May’s new head of policy has previously developed plans to cut employment rights and wages in poorer areas, it has emerged.
George Freeman, a Conservative MP, wrote a paper in 2013 arguing that the minimum wage and public sector pay should be “regionalised”.
The paper, ‘The Innovation Economy Industrial Policy’, which he co-wrote with fellow MP Kwasi Kwarteng, suggests reducing the minimum wage in areas where incomes are lower.
Other suggestions included halving corporation tax for big business, abolishing subsidies for green energy, and exempting corporations from paying tax or having to follow employment rights for their first three years.
It also said corporation tax should be cut to 10 per cent as a matter of course and advocating moving skilled workers from the public sector to the private sector.
The MP will now chair Ms May’s policy board – despite her suggestions that her government would help workers, rather than “the privileged few”.
"By maintaining uniform national minimum wages and wage rates in the public sector, the Government creates real imbalances in regional labour markets," he wrote.
Mr Freeman’s appointment, first reported by the Daily Mirror newspaper, signals the possibility of a radically right-wing direction for industrial policy under the now PM.
Both Downing Street and Mr Freeman declined to comment to the newspaper.
It comes after the Coalition Government commissioned the so-called Beecroft Report, which looked at changes to employment law and uggested making it easier to sack workers.
The new Prime Minister appears to be breaking with the industrial strategy of the last government. Last week she said all takeovers of British companies should be scrutinised to judge whether they were in the national interest.
Register for free to continue reading
Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism
By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists
Already have an account? sign in
Join our new commenting forum
Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies