Conservative Way Forward had a fantastic evening with Syed Kamall MEP last Friday. This gave our supporters the chance to meet the leader of the Conservatives in Europe and MEP for London at a particularly exciting time for the future of our relationship with the EU: a discussion on 'how to best Brexit' was top of the menu.
Must Reads from the Conservative Way Forward Blog
With the changes in British politics this summer, some doubt was cast about the future of George Osborne’s flagship Northern Powerhouse policy. As things have started to calm down, at least on the Conservative side of the House, it looks like Mrs May is every bit as serious about it as her predecessor was.
The current conversation about Grammar schools is long overdue. Our new Prime Minister and Education Secretary are right to engage in it.
Five Must Reads
1. THE TELEGRAPH: Lord Howell - A bright future awaits Britain post-Brexit in the Commonwealth markets
What has emerged in the modern Commonwealth network is not an old-style trading bloc but something much more novel and suited to the network age - a grass-roots-driven type of organisation. Perhaps surprisingly to some, this is proving more suitable to the expansion of trade and commerce in the digital age, with its growing emphasis on information and data exchange, than the more dated EU hierarchy, with its heavy and top-down bias towards centralisation, scale and integration. Thus the assumptions of 1972 – that the UK’s "destiny" and best trade prospects lay in Europe and not in the Commonwealth – are being turned on their head.
Africa may be the world’s poorest continent, but it is no longer a “hopeless continent,” as The Economist magazine described it back in 2000. Since the start of the new millennium, Africa’s average per capita income adjusted for inflation and purchasing power parity rose by more than 50 percent and Africa’s growth rate has averaged almost 5 percent per year.
Increasing wealth has led to improvements in key indicators of human wellbeing. In 1999, 58 percent of Africans lived on less than $1.90 per person per day. By 2011, 44 percent of Africans lived on that income – all while the African population rose from 650 million to 1 billion. If the current trends continue, Africa’s absolute poverty rate will fall to 24 percent by 2030.
Far from retreating into isolation, the UK economy now looks more open than ever. It is gradually dawning on all but the most stubborn in the Remain camp that the world still wants to do business with an independent UK — and that, freed from having to tag along with EU trade deals, this country is now able to negotiate mutually favourable arrangements with fast-growing economies such as India and China. Meanwhile, the EU’s problems continue. Standard and Poor’s, one of the world’s top credit ratings agencies, warned recently that the EU is ‘unsustainable in its current form’.
4. THE INSTITUTE OF ECONOMIC AFFAIRS: Christopher Snowden - Poverty, inequality and the day before yesterday
Every standard poverty measure is either lower than, or the same as, it was when the coalition took charge. The same is true of the inequality. Supposedly rampant in the years of brutal austerity, it has actually been one of the most tediously static indicators in the British economy for well over a decade.
We live in truly dramatic political times. I believe now is the time to be bold and make sure we as a Party grasp the huge opportunity before us to make sure we cement our one nation compassionate Conservative credentials for all working people.
Have something to say? We are always looking for contributions to our 'Forward!' blog. Please e-mail our Campaigns Director, Theodora Dickinson, with any ideas for articles!
7pm, 8th September: Parliamentary Summer Drinks Reception
Sir Gerald Howarth MP and Conservative Way Forward invite you to join us on the Terrace of the House of Commons for the Annual CWF Parliamentary Summer Drinks Reception.
Now that Parliamentary sovereignty has been reasserted, where better to enjoy a summer's evening of wine and political conversation, than the House of Commons.
We very much hope to see you there!
1pm, 10th September: CWF Action Day in St Albans
On September 10th CWF activists will be travelling to St Albans to help hard-working local MP Anne Main!
We'll arrive in St Albans at 1pm and have a quick sandwich lunch before heading out to campaign with team CWF.
Drinks are on us in the evening, and you're also welcome to join us for dinner in the evening for just £10.
2pm, 2nd October: CWF Action Day at Party Conference
Join Conservative Way Forward at Conference again this year on our action-packed Campaign Bus!
Here's the plan for Sunday 2nd October:
2pm: Assemble outside the secure zone and board the CWF campaign bus. Precise location TBC.
5pm: We'll be back at the secure zone by 5pm.
Please RSVP to say you'll join us and reserve your seat on the bus. We only have 75 spots available and it will be first-come-first-served.
We very much hope to see you there!
Hero of the Week
Our Hero of the Week, for the second week in a row, is our new Prime Minister, Theresa May, for confirming that she will continue her weekly door knocks in her constituency despite becoming the Prime Minister.
Her seat, Maidenhead, was marginal once, and in 2005 she was the number one ‘decapitation target’ of the Liberal Democrats. After two decades of hard work, Mrs May now has a majority of 30,000. Conservative Way Forward is delighted that our party is led by someone who really understands the importance of campaigning!