Press briefing: afternoon 7 January 2014
This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government
The Prime Minister’s Spokesperson (PMS) answered questions on benefits, 0845 numbers and the national minimum wage.
Mayor of London comments
Asked if the Prime Minister (PM) had any views on the Mayor of London’s comments about the Deputy Prime Minister, the PMS said that the Mayor can speak for himself.
Asked about whether the PM had any comments about reported plans by the Polish Prime Minister to veto any EU treaty change which would discriminate against Poles, the PMS said the PM had set his views out very clearly in his Andrew Marr interview on Sunday. The PM has repeatedly said that there needs to be treaty change and a number of other countries have concerns about benefits rules. The PMS said that this is an important issue that the PM will continue to raise.
Asked if treaty change would apply equally across all member states, the PMS confirmed that it would.
Asked if the PM had unfairly singled out people from Poland, the PMS said that it was a fact that following the A8 succession, the greatest number of people coming to the UK from the accession countries came from Poland.
When asked if additional bans of differing lengths of time could be introduced the PMS said that the government’s approach was to do as much as possible within the law.
Asked for the PM’s view on proposals to ban the government use of 0845 numbers the PMS said that the government had was already taking action in this area.
National minimum wage
Asked if the PM thought there is a case for an above inflation increase in the national minimum wage, the PMS pointed to the comments he had made in this morning’s briefing saying that the independent Low Pay Commission (LPC) made recommendations and government would await the outcome of that work.
Asked if the government would accept the LPC recommendations, the PMS said that we should wait for the Commission to report first.