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Page last updated at 07:56 GMT, Monday, 12 April 2010 08:56 UK

Labour's 'reform agenda'


The Labour Party manifesto "has a big argument at its heart", according to one of the people who wrote it.

Energy Secretary Ed Miliband said that the document, to be launched today, does not contain any big spending commitments. "What we are saying is that we will protect some key public services, sending on schools, policing and the health service," he added.

He said there would be cuts to "lower priority" areas such as legal aid and regeneration schemes, but denied that meant there had been "waste" previously.

"You have to make a judgment about the fiscal circumstances that you are in and find cuts to lower priority programmes," Mr Miliband said.

"I think regeneration spending is very, very important. We have put money into regeneration. Actually it has had an effect."

The manifesto includes a pledge not to increase income tax rates and to link the minimum wage to average earnings growth in the lifetime of the next parliament. And the party is promising that all public sector pay above £150,000 will have to be signed off by the Chief Secretary to the Treasury.

Mr Miliband said that the manifesto "has a big argument at its heart", aiming to make markets work in the public interest while making government work better.

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