Adam Afriyie
MP for Windsor
Widespread confidence in the Conservatives

A new poll by the Edelman Trust shows a solid vote of confidence in this Conservative government and a recognition of how divided left-leaning Labour has become.

Just 18% trust Jeremy Corbyn to do what is right, compared to 33% who felt the same way about Miliband in 2014. Moreover, 40% of the public trust David Cameron to do the right thing, up from 33% in 2014.

This builds on a YouGov poll from just before the New Year that showed that people recognise that the Conservatives are the only party that can be trusted with the economy. 41% said that they trusted the Conservative Party the most to handle the economy, with Labour on a distant 18%. This 23% lead is higher than any lead we had in the last Parliament. Even in Scotland the Conservative Party are recognised as being the best party to handle the economy. Let’s hope that this translates into votes at the Holyrood elections later this year.

These figures are an encouraging sign that people are recognising the good work that Conservatives are doing in cutting Labour’s overspending, reducing the deficit, lowering unemployment and reforming welfare and education. Given the fantastic employment figures that we have seen in the past few years it’s also unsurprising that the same poll shows that the Conservatives are recognised as being the best party to deal with unemployment.

The poll also shows that the public sees Labour as swinging hard to the left. David Cameron is perceived as a moderate, centre-right politician, whereas Corbyn is registered as being nearly twice as far from the political centre, or indeed the Labour Party!

Irrespective of public perceptions, there remains more work to be done in government. So let’s continue the important work of mending the economy to reward this trust and show that only the Conservatives can deliver strong growth, a budget surplus and excellent public services.

 

Windsor MP welcomes Government report on distributed ledgers

The Windsor MP welcomes the new report by the Government Office for Science on distributed ledgers, also known as blockchains.

Distributed ledgers are a method of recording information on a decentralised database. Proponents of distributed ledger claim that they are more secure than traditional ways of storing data and that they also cost less due to the fact that they strip away bureaucracy and shred red tape.

Distributed ledgers offer many varied new uses in the public sector, such as collecting taxes more effectively, giving the public access to their health records and verifying property and business records more securely.

The report makes a number of recommendations to the Government with the objective of exploring their potential use in both the public and private sectors.

Adam Afriyie, Windsor’s MP, commented:

“Blockchains are one of the most exciting technology developments in recent years. As a former IT entrepreneur I look forward to the Government’s response to this report and soon hope to see pilots and trials of blockchains in the public sector.

“The potential savings to taxpayers with more efficient public services are enormous.

“Blockchains are secure but they are not cybercrime free so we must be proceed with caution. The creation of a potentially massive database containing everyone’s information could be like painting a giant target on the public sector for cyber criminals to aim at.

“In parliament we also need to consider the issues around Blockchains and I hope to secure a debate in the forthcoming months so MPs can engage with this exciting new topic.

“Let’s make 2016 the year that blockchains stopped being the sole domain of tech geeks and entered the public space and the political arena.”

 

ENDS

Note to editors

  1. Adam Afriyie has a strong background and interest in science, technology and innovation due to his entrepreneurial background in the IT sector and a variety of posts he has held and/or currently holds, including Shadow Minister for Science, Chairman of the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology (POST) and President of the Conservative Technology Forum (CTF).
  2. This press release is based on a report released by the Government Office for Science that can be found here.

 

Windsor MP welcomes Government progress on self-driving cars

The Windsor MP has discovered through a Parliamentary Question that the Government has made progress on its plans to introduce self-driving cars to UK roads.

Last year the Government announced that it was backing a pathfinder to assess the technological and societal impact of driverless pods in Milton Keynes.

The Government has supported a number of projects in the UK, including UKAutodrive, Venturer and GATEway in order to deliver more precise autonomous systems and examine the intermediate steps necessary to integrate self-driving cars into modern Britain.

The question follows a Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this week in which stories about driverless cars in exhibits from Ford, Audi and even Blackberry featured heavily in the news headlines.

Adam Afriyie, Windsor’s MP, commented:

“Self-driving cars are one of the most exciting inventions of the past few decades. As the technology goes from strength to strength we can expect to see more and more self-driving cars on our roads in the coming decades which have the potential to significantly improve road safety and reduce congestion.

“A forward-looking government will embrace this kind of transformative technology and I’m delighted that the Government both recognises the need for Britain to prepare for this exciting but disruptive new technology and safely allow the private sector to lead the way.

“With the Conservatives we can look forward to a brighter future in which we prioritise backing the technologies of the future rather than propping up the technologies of the past.

“Cars were once unaffordable to most people but soon everyone will be able to enjoy the safety of relatively inexpensive driverless cars with an inbuilt “chauffeur” that lets them work or relax on route.

“The benefits to business efficiency and people’s quality of life will be life-changing.

“This is yet another example of the positive benefits technology and the free market can bring to business efficiency, people’s quality of life and safety on the road.”

ENDS

Note to editors

  1. Adam Afriyie has a strong background and interest in science, technology and innovation due to his entrepreneurial background in the IT sector and a variety of posts he has held and/or currently holds, including Shadow Minister for Science, President of the Conservative Technology Forum (CTF) and Chairman of the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology (POST).
Windsor MP welcomes another fall in unemployment

The new figures show that in the constituency of Windsor, there are now only 425 claimants of unemployment benefit.

This represents a rate of 0.8% of the Windsor population, placing Windsor in the top 10% best performing constituencies.

Nationally, the employment rate has broken the previous record high set last month, with an employment rate of 73.9%. Inflation is 0.1%, far below wage growth of 2.4%.

The MP for the Windsor constituency, Adam Afriyie welcomed the figures:

“I’m just over the moon. This is an early Christmas present for everyone who’s got a job because work is the best route to financial security. What’s best of all is that only 35 young people are now unemployed with youth employment having dropped by half since this time last year.

“It is at times like this that I am reminded why I joined the Conservative Party: to give people jobs, incomes and a way to improve life for themselves and their familes.

Hurrah for Tim Peake – but we must cut the red tape that stands between us and the stars

Tim Peake, the first British astronaut for 20 years, blasted off this morning to dock with the ISS. Adam Afriyie MP, a former technology entrepreneur and Chair of the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology has said that we must make sure that Tim Peake is the first of many British astronauts.

In an article, published on the Telegraph, Adam Afriyie writes:

“The ISS represents a truly momentous international achievement. It is our first permanent outpost at the beginning of a pioneering quest both to understand and ultimately colonise the universe.

“Major Tim Peake must be the first of many pioneering British astronauts that continue our great history of academic discovery which opens up new avenues of commercial benefit for the rest of us.

“Only by unleashing private enterprise in space can Britain take the place it deserves in humanity’s quest to understand and colonise the universe.”

To read the article in full on the Telegraph website, click here.

To read the POSTnote on the future of space commerce, click here.