South Thanet MP Craig Mackinlay: Financial market turmoil, local growth and Manston processing centre

Craig Mackinlay

The political world is characterised by ups and downs. I won’t beat about the bush – the Conservative Party has had a bruising couple of weeks. I remember only too well the near wipe out in our support when, due to the chaotic Parliamentary shenanigans during the Brexit wars, we unexpectedly had to run European Parliamentary elections.

We received a paltry 9% of the vote and then went on just 9 months later to receive 44% and a landslide majority of 80 at the December 2019 general election. Few things are set in stone in the fast moving world of political fortunes.

Many have tried to blame the turmoil in financial markets and the rise in interest rates on the mini-budget of just a couple of weeks ago. Putting the economy to sleep for the best part of two years and the Bank of England maintaining money printing and ultra-low interest rates for an extended period was always going to create an inflationary bubble of the old sort. Add to that the massive increase in fuel prices and commodities on the back of Putin’s illegal war in Ukraine and we have a heady mix that few could have foreseen.

The primary measure in the mini-budget was the huge subsidy to every household and business to cap the unit price for energy. There were few other options available; the alternative would have been true misery for all and extensive business failures. The scale of that support is what upset the markets because there is no potential upside limit on the cost – that will depend on the ongoing wholesale price of energy.

It is strange that every MP across the House no matter what political leaning were calling for support. That support came and many now sit both in judgement and bewilderment at the effect. I wasn’t bewildered at all. The measure which caused more than its fair share of heat was the reduction in the highest rate of personal tax from 45% to 40%. I still maintain this to be sensible even though this has been reversed. It cannot be right that the UK is such an outlier in personal income tax with the US having a top rate of 37%, Singapore 22%. Hungary, a country I know well, took the bold move some years ago in introducing a flat rate of income tax of 16%. High tax rates suppress innovation and growth. We need growth.

With US interest rates likely to reach 4.4%, a rise in rates around the world was inevitable. It is US Dollar strength that is another market mover. At times of international stress, most certainly so with Putin threatening, idly or otherwise, to use nuclear weapons, a rush to the Dollar always happens, doubly so when such good returns in interest are on offer.

UK interest rates at 2.25% are still historically low but I am not one to advocate further large increases. The Bank of England upon being given independence in 1998 has just one lever – that of interest rates to try to keep inflation in check. I am not sure that blunt instrument is the correct one today. This inflation is different – it is not ‘frothy money’ inflation, this is energy and commodity driven inflation. Raising interest rates to high levels might stop the purchase of a new TV but won’t stop high gas prices. The pain to mortgage holders is obvious but likely to be welcomed by savers.

On local growth I maintain as I always have that a re-opened Manston airport will bring huge local opportunities. Whether a group of residents are successful in bringing a successful Judicial Review to stop it remains to be seen. What people do with their money is entirely up to them but I do object to any of my money, via the precept that we pay to Ramsgate Town Council,, being used to add to the funding to stop such a significant project. If you feel the same do consider signing a petition that I will be presenting to Parliament.

This government has significant work to do in a short time. We need to stop the illegal channel crossings, causing local problems at the Manston clearing centre, a shortage of hotel rooms in some towns and undoubtedly nationwide housing pressures. We need to get more people into work: there are jobs unfilled. We need to deliver better healthcare measured in results not simply the amount of money thrown at the NHS. We need to show that ours is a plan for growth. Big asks but I know we can do it.

Statement issued by the Chair of Ramsgate Town Council, Cllr Steve Albon,

This statement is in response to the petition to Parliament to “request that the House of Commons urges Ramsgate Town Council to accept the decision of the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Transport, work constructively with the Government, RSP, Thanet MPs and other local authorities and elected representatives towards the re-opening of the airport, and to refrain from spending more public money on further legal challenges”.

“On behalf of Ramsgate Town Council please may I take the opportunity to respond to our MP’s extremely churlish behaviour, we find it very disappointing that Mr Mackinlay is willing to stoop to attacking a democratically elected local council for political gains.

“The MP knows that Parliament has no power to intervene in parish council matters, which would go against the Government principles on localism.  The petition is a waste of Parliamentary time and the electorate’s time.

“The MP is of course entitled to his opinion, but he has no evidence to back-up his assertion of wrongdoing by the Town Council.  Mr Mackinlay is welcome to contact me if ever wants to discuss matters or seek clarification on the activities of Ramsgate Town Council, which he has never attempted to do.

“Until such time, we remain disappointed that our own MP continues to use his position of power to undermine and discredit the hard work that this Council puts into promoting Ramsgate and supporting our community and residents in ways that our larger councils are not able to meet.”


  1. in a couple of years they wont have to worry about it , they will be in opposition booing and jeering for a few hundred pounds a day sat on thier ar**s

  2. As normal, you are so out of touch with reality Craig.

    if you actually lived in Thanet and the flight path was over your house, would you still want it?

    Could you provide proof of these ‘huge local opportunities’ that the airport would bring. Hard facts, not the usual tory waffle!

  3. An MP in favour of lowering the top rate of income tax, surely not because he will benefit from a lower rate?
    Agree with the petition mind you, Ramsgate Council needs to send its members out to canvas local people on their door steps to get the real picture rather than listen to the online whinging by the vocal minority!

    • The Ramsgate councillors made no secret of their feelings about Manston when the elections were held. A majority of anti-airport councillors was elected.
      They did what they said what they would do. Objected to Manston airport. Their donation was quite legal. RTC’s accounts were audited and signed off.
      I’d like to know how these amazing benefits will come about. Even if the JR fails, hardly a plane will fly from this remote corner of Kingdom. All the experts say so. If they are wrong, and business booms, it will be a terrible blight on some parts of Thanet.

      I rather object to my money (ie taxes) going to pay untold billions to already wealthy oil moguls. Never mind a few thousand.

    • Tax reduction don’t be fooled! The Chocolate Tea Pot MP for South Thanet is entirely without scruples, he’s doing a Trump! Telling people what they want to hear, but doing nothing! Only the ill informed, ignorant, and gullible will fall for this petition thing to reopen Manston. The petition will be meaningless unless it only covers people in the CT11 postal code area, who will face the most destruction by low flying aircraft! That means everyone from Ramsgate Harbour, to Nevercourt!

      Mackinlay is clutching at straws, because his new Truss government is in turmoil, and they are wrecking the economy! They are turning to the NAZI handbook and want to “Transport” people to another country to be “Resettled”. People crossing the Channel are not illegal! Remember Mackinlay was deputy leader of UKIP, but jumped ship once Farage failed to win the South Thanet constituency! The only “growth” this Tory government is likely to see, is the growth of more Food Banks! Don’t be a fool, vote this joker out come the next election!

  4. Thank you to the likes of Craig my grandchildren and potentially great grandchildren will be playing off the present governments debts for many years to come. So much for a well thought out plan to get the country up and running.

    As for Liz attempting to take the credit for the electricity grant. BoJo had already put this in place.

    • It is also a loan we have to pay back to them. Yes, rather than put a levy on her fat cat friends obscene salaries & bonuses-while they are making record profits, instead Liz sorted out a loan scheme & wanted to reward the fat cats-who thanks to Thatcher’s Reaganomics of deregulating the city & everything else eventually crashed the worlds finances in 2008 with more money & power to do it all over again-until her ‘useful idiot’ chancellor got exposed last weekend.

  5. “Welcomed by savers “ while mortgages cost are soaring,No increase for savers. Craig show me when savers are getting more intereo

  6. Graig you say it was not the mini budget which caused the problems I beg to differ, we all know that there are massive problems going on in the world causing volatile markets in all sectors, now we are glad your party brought the maximum we pay for gas & electricity for the average user but you still have not explained how you intend to fund the mini budget yet but what caused the market to really explode was the abolished 45 pence tax now reversed which made everyone say that the P M & Chancellor had no clue that tipped it over the top causing the mortgage rate rise and the withdrawal of loans and withdrawal of new loow rate loans making it harder for those trying to get on the ladder no chance, funny thing is none of this really affects me but it does those who are worse of than me and its your government who are doing it to us all.

  7. Craig, Liz said we need to grow more food stuff in our country so we are not so reliant on other countries yes we need to it’s a must but why did your government insist while you have been a member for Thanet South that we need to build all these houses on our rich arable land do we hear you oppose this, long as I’m alright Jack is your attitude to the people of Thanet and Ramsgate in particular.

    • Due to Increased mortgage repayments Barry, will mean increased rents for Buy to Let Landlords, who will pass on the increase to tenants! The chocolate teapot for South Thanet is a traitor, selling out hundreds of existing jobs in Ramsgate’s hospitality industry, especially the Harbour, if Manston re-opens! Don’t full for his phoney petition, because its only an election ploy, and is meaningless!

  8. Says it all really our MP who over sees one of the poorest areas in England, with 30% of children living in poverty votes the highest earners tax cuts.

    Remember 66% of the population didnt vote Tory and dont want a Tory government.

  9. I wont be signing the petition because

    1, I agree with RTC

    2, you clearly have a conflict of interests being an owner of an aircraft company.

    3, I wouldnt back a company with a struck of solicitor for mis use of clients funds as it CEO.

  10. You can stick your petition where the sun doesn’t shine. We object to having to pay tax to the rich like yourself & your repulsive Tory chums for doing a terrible job for 12 years-but that is just the way it is.

    You will have to suck it up that ,many don’t buy into the latest Manston is going to save the area-bringing wealth, jobs & prosperity to the area nonsense, put forth by every airport owner there since 1998 that never comes true-as per the KCC report & both KCC & an independent investigation last year both concluding there is no need for a freight airport there or any financial viability-as every one there since 1998 has lost money & ended up with combined debts of over 100 million.

    We all know where your loyalties lie-as shown by your abysmal voting record in favour of tax breaks for the rich, punishing the poorest & against green energy. The economy crashed because of you imbecile of a leader & her ‘useful idiot’ chancellor, who like a good little doggie took the rap when the give millionaires & billionaires 60 grand & make life harder for working class people blew up in their face.

  11. This MP must be voted out at the next election. Our MP quotes tax rates in Hungary He???. His ideas will destroy our services, wreck our economy and, cause huge social division.He is out of his depth, out of touch and hopefully out of a job.

    • Ah! They we are.Rabbit hole no 43.The turmoil on the currency market was caused by Ramsgate Town Council part financing the JR on Manston airport.Well I never!
      Thank you Bert for your perspective,
      Don’t call us we will call you.

  12. I did wonder when Craig would pop up. I also wondered how he would laugh off the last few weeks mayhem, as a little local difficulty.
    The mini budget was an entirely self inflicted injury, and only the most extreme of rabbits, would burrow into the rabbit hole of blaming the world for the incompetencies of Truss and Kwarteng.
    Craig might comfort himself by comparing the result of a non election to the european parliament, with the lie fest of the 2019 General election, but that’s not how his colleagues are taking it.
    They know that sometimes that once in a generation there is a sea change in the attitudes of the public.1906 with the liberal landslide and a change towards the social state.1945 when that change was confirmed and made good, and 1979, when the individual became more important than the community.
    It’s difficult to decide if this is a sea change or if this is a period of anger at a govt of nincompoops, but there have been other issues at play.
    Brexit has been done, but I think many would like to see the ends tied up and some kind of deal done, to assist trade and remove some of these self imposed barriers to trade and travel.Russia’s bullying of Ukraine has engendered a pulling together, even though we are facing an energy crisis.Being an individual when facing a tyrant is not a good policy option.We need friends and allies.
    The bunkum, greed, sloth, and general selfishness of water companies, energy companies, banks, financial institutions,housing associations,railway and bus companies, and quite a few of those having access to capital, is driving a substantial proportion of the public to consider alternatives to an unrestrained free market.Past PM’s have understood this, but unfortunately this PM influenced as she is by the likes of the Tax payers alliance, is sealing her own fate.
    Where a few weeks ago, it might have been possible to forecast of a minority Tory Govt or a hung parliament at the next election, now the pendulum appears to be swinging away from the tories, and they know it.
    Labour has a huge hurdle to climb, but so did the Labour party in 1945. Back then it only had 159 seats, now it has a few more.
    Truss lacks Boris’s public affability, she also lacks May’s competence, and is not capable of employing guile in the manner of a Cameron.
    She is facing enormous problems, and has not shown the capability of surmounting those problems.She may do so,but more likely she will bring the house down on the Tory party.

  13. Hang on he hangs out in Broadstairs, so he doesn’t pay any precept to Ramsgate Town Council.Anyway his base in Medway or somewhere.
    Craig you are a big fibber!

  14. What a load of bollocks from Craig YET AGAIN. I have two letters from him or did have as binned them , how he stuck up Boris rear part of course he would , nice pay , good earner this is lets keep it going for as long as I can.
    Same as the boss at the time , I am keeping my job and doing my job, where did he go , on holiday while the rest of us wanted to know about energy prices.

  15. In his typically long-winded essay, our MP argues that black is white, the Tory mini-budget didn’t cause the pound to crash and that the elected councillors of Ramsgate Town Council do not have any right to spend part of their budget as the voters indicated when they supported their publicised stance on Manston.
    Doesn’t it make you wonder how his mind works?

    • He forgets to mention about his long term relationship with the RSP director who he has been supporting for many years “even before this Odessey started”
      He with his Tory Councillor mates got the land usage in the Local plan changed from Mixed use back to aviation “”We all remember that 25 the DCO would have trumped whatever happened on that local plan, but the fear would have been that it had been re-designated away from aviation, it would have instantly inflated the value possibly to unacceptable standards in the future. That was my great worry, and we’re out of that, so as Tony said” confirming that his manipulations weren’t to save Manston but to save his Mate money,

  16. “On local growth I maintain as I always have that a re-opened Manston airport will bring huge local opportunities. Whether a group of residents are successful in bringing a successful Judicial Review to stop it remains to be seen. What people do with their money is entirely up to them but I do object to any of my money, via the precept that we pay to Ramsgate Town Council,, being used to add to the funding to stop such a significant project”
    What utter Tosh it costs you nothing as you claim any coucil tax on expenses

    • God help us, you are delusional if you think re-opening Manston will “bring huge local opportunities” ! What it would do is close down all the businesses in Ramsgate Harbour/town, devalue property, and cause massive health risks due to noise and air pollution! Don’t fall for Mackinlay’s nonsense, he like most Tory’s don’t do anything unless they can benefit from it!

  17. Let’s hope you show similar concerned for the £8.5 million of OUR TAX MONEY the Tory government paid to the airport developers for delays to starting a project they didn’t actually have planning permission for. Might want to do some proper due diligence on the people that ended up with the £8.5 million of OUR TAX MONEY as they seem to be an offshore outfit, so goodness knows who is really benefiting. The deep irony here, of course, is that they themselves are highly unlikely be paying any tax to the UK.

  18. South Thanet constituency population approx 70,000. Cost of Craig Mackinlay (including expenses, residency etc) approx £120,000+. Cost per person = £1.71 per year.
    Ramsgate Town Council population approx 40,000. RTC grant to protect Ramsgate from adverse impact of restoring a defunct airport. £10,000. Cost per person = 25p. I know which of those is better value. Craig, can I have my money back.

  19. ‘…the UK is such an outlier in personal income tax with the US having a top rate of 37%, Singapore 22%. Hungary, .. a flat rate of income tax of 16%.’ – really , we’re such an outlier!
    This chap needs to be sacked, he is neither in touch with the reality of Thanet nor the mood of the country and he doesn’t even get his conflict of interest over Manston.
    A few visits to the Jobcentre should be a good wake up call!

  20. You’ve done me wrong, your time is up
    You took a sip from the devil’s cup
    You broke my heart, there’s no way back
    Move right out of here, baby, go on pack your bags
    Just who do you think you are?
    Stop actin’ like some kind of star
    Just who do you think you are?
    Take it like a man, baby, if that’s what you are

  21. Craig’s column reads like satire, as usual. He’s either totally delusional or just disingenuous – I’m not sure what’s worse. His party has been in power for over a decade and they’re acting like it’s someone else’s fault we’re all in this state. Who’s the new enemy now? Oh yeah, the “anti-growth coalition” (of which little Ramsgate Town Council is no doubt a part!). The sooner we’re rid of this self-serving inadequate and his mates the better – the people of south Thanet deserve so much more.

  22. The Bank of England will discontinue support for the £ on Friday.
    There’s the real prospect of some pension funds crashing, with dire consequences for many pensioners.
    When the Bank of Last Resort won’t bail you out, what’s left?

  23. I can’t understand the anti airport comments. Surely as one of the most depressed areas in the south east, Thanet should welcome any opportunity to create employment.

    • John Earwicker

      If you dont understand our anti view that says more about you !

      Simple points

      1, poor geographical position

      2, poor infrastructure ie no decent road or rail. Plus all aviation fuel has to be brought in my HGV tanker making fuel very expensive compared to airports on the fuel grid.

      3, no demand for new airport, southend just a few miles away running well below its numbers. Doncaster airport closing.

      4, all independent bodies say no need to a new airport

      5, manston has gone bust 4 times.

      That’s just a few simple facts and they are FACTS.

      Who is going to invest 500million plus when manston has so much again it ?

      • We’re all entitled to our opinion Mr X. I stand by mine & don’t mind my name being published with it

  24. “Hungary, a country I know well” Yes Craig you do as it is where you want to operate your airline. You know, the one you keep forgetting you own.

  25. Doncaster Sheffield Airport is on the point of closing due to lack of financial viability. In today’s worlds air freight and travel has a limited future – the airport owners comments. I see no logic in using Manston as an airport when other more centrally place ones cannot make a go of it. It is going to be surrounded by new housing and we can see the start of house building by the landing lights from its previous life. Who would want to buy a house there? Putting housing on it is the best of two evils.

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