Inequality in the UK: speech to the Resolution Foundation by Vince Cable MP, leader of the Liberal Democrats

Wednesday 6 September 2017 Incomes and Inequality

There is a vast gap between the living standards of the better and least well off in the UK. Under the surface, there are also stark generational and regional divides. Recently widening wealth inequality is now one of the greatest challenges facing the country.

Seven decades after the foundation of the welfare state, why are opportunities and outcomes so unequal in the UK? What kinds of inequality matter most in 21st Century Britain? And in an era of growing economic uncertainty, will inequality rise or fall? And what does all this mean for policy makers tackling it?

In his first major policy speech since becoming leader of the Liberal Democrats, Vince Cable outlined the evolution of inequality in the UK, its causes, and its effects on both the economy and living standards. He highlighted the importance of inequality of wealth as well as that of income, and set out the Liberal Democrat response.

Following the speech, there was quick-fire responses from the TUC’s Head of the Economic and Social Affairs Kate Bell and the Independent’s Economics Editor Ben Chu, and an audience Q&A session chaired by the Resolution Foundation’s Executive Chair David Willetts.