No to Royal Mail privatisation

Last month, the Government began the shameful sell-off of the Royal Mail, putting the nation’s postal services in jeopardy for little more than cheap political gain. Knowing that George Osborne’s economic policies are failing, the Government are looking to cover up the fact that their borrowing has increased by £245bn more than they had planned, and are doing so by sacrificing one of the nation’s most important institutions.

Last month, the Government began the shameful sell-off of the Royal Mail, putting the nation’s postal services in jeopardy for little more than cheap political gain. Knowing that George Osborne’s economic policies are failing, the Government are looking to cover up the fact that their borrowing has increased by £245bn more than they had planned, and are doing so by sacrificing one of the nation’s most important institutions.

 

The move is expected to have disastrous consequence for customers. As private companies try to increase profit at all costs, stiff competition from other suppliers will mean that it will be impossible to prevent cuts in  deliveries in the countryside, an end to six-day deliveries, and differences in prices across the country. Huge price increases are also expected, which would also allow Royal Mail’s competitors to raise their prices, making the cost of sending a parcel prohibitively expensive.

 

And while the Government is trying to justify their decision by claiming that privatisation will attract more money into the Royal Mail to make it more competitive, their hypocrisy is easily exposed when one considers the fact that half of its profits will now go into the pockets of already rich investors instead of being put back into the organisation or used to improve the conditions of some of the nation’s hardest workers, who now face insecurity over potential job losses.

 

The fact that the Royal Mail’s annual profits were in excess £400 million last year makes the sell-off even worse. At a time when the government is squeezing every last penny it can from the taxpayer, it is auctioning off one of its most consistent long-term sources of income for short-term political gain.

 

This is not the type of Government that people in this country deserve. Privatisation is a poor economic choice, and is also undemocratic, given that 70% of British people oppose the move. The Coalition believe that they can ride rough-shod over the will of the people as long as it suits their unrealistic and damaging vision for the nation. Labour believes the British people deserve better.

 

Ian Gilbert, Labour candidate for Rochford and Southend East at the next General Election, said, ""The Royal Mail is a cherished national institution and it an act of economic and cultural vandalism to sell it off to the hedge funds at a knock down price."

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