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The Conservative Party has published its manifesto for the election.

Launched ahead of the General Election on 4 July, the manifesto boasts a focus on supporting small and medium-sized businesses.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said: “Small and medium-sized businesses are the lifeblood of our economy and we are making the UK the best place in the world to start or grow a business. We have great foundations: world-class talent, an internationally envied legal system and a business-friendly regulatory environment.

“We are supporting firms with a business rates support package worth £4.3 billion over the next five years to support small businesses and the high street.”

This includes looking to ease the burden of business rates for high street, leisure and hospitality businesses by increasing the multiplier on distribution warehouses that support online shopping and improving access to finance for SMEs including through expanding Open Finance and by exploring the creation of Regional Mutual Banks.

It is also looking at cutting tax for workers by taking another 2p off employee National Insurance and cutting taxes to support the self-employed by abolishing the main rate of self-employed National Insurance entirely by the end of the Parliament..

From a crime point of view, the Conservative Party pledges to recruit 8,000 more full-time, fully warranted police officers to ensure a new police officer for every neighbourhood as well as cut anti-social behaviour in town centres by rolling out Hotspot Policing, increasing the use of community payback and electronic tagging.

It also plans to bring forward its Tobacco and Vapes Bill which was a victim of the election announcement as well as the reintroduction of the measures proposed in the Criminal Justice Bill which include a separate offence for assaulting retail workers. It also looks to move forward with its work on tackling childhood and adult obesity by restricting the advertising of products high in fat, salt and sugar, as well as continue to develop a UK-wide Deposit Return Scheme, while “working to minimise the impact on businesses and consumers”.