We are facing huge issues: recovery from the pandemic, tackling the climate crisis, and overcoming the surge in cost of living. It's clear that our economy is worsening inequality, in-work poverty and environmental degradation. It needs an overhaul. Dealing with these issues presents an enormous opportunity to build a new, just, sustainable economy filled with well-paid, secure green jobs in existing and emerging industries.
We have been at the forefront of calls for a Green New Deal for Northern Ireland and have always backed progressive climate legislation. Only by creating high-paid, high-quality green new jobs can we secure sustainable growth and tackle the climate crisis.
We want to invest in our agricultural community, who are vital to food security for Northern Ireland and the entire UK, helping them towards farm diversification and reaching net-zero carbon emissions.
We will support an ambitious anti-poverty agenda, tackling deprivation, unemployment and investing in skills and education to lift entire communities out of poverty.
We need a responsible approach to funding these plans, recognising the limited revenue-raising powers of the Executive, the need for financial reform and the need to equitably grow our tax base.
And we need to continue to support our economy as it recovers from the impact of COVID and the cost of living crisis.