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Last Updated: Monday, 18 September 2006, 08:15 GMT 09:15 UK
Blair plans Labour policy groups
Tony Blair
Tony Blair is to set up four working parties to discuss Labour's future
Tony Blair is to announce the creation of four working parties to examine Labour policy for the next decade.

They will cover foreign policy, public services, economic competitiveness, security and migration.

Critics will claim Mr Blair, who says he will quit within a year, is seeking to entrench his legacy.

But a No 10 aide insisted the plan had been discussed with Gordon Brown and said it would show "the government is united and moving forward".

The findings are expected to help shape next year's Comprehensive Spending Review - traditionally outlined by Gordon Brown as chancellor - and a series of policy announcements up to next summer.

Future challenges

A Downing Street aide said: "The prime minister and the chancellor both agree that the key to success is a strong, unified agenda.

"This is a refreshed process which will be inclusive and provide solutions to the challenges which the UK faces.

"It will show the country that the government is united and moving forward and show the party the range of talented and able ministers who are making decisions at the heart of government."

Mr Blair is set to take up the theme of the challenges of the next decade in his farewell address to Labour's annual conference next week.

He has told colleagues it will address the issues which the party must tackle to secure itself a fourth general election victory.

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