Jeremy Corbyn has again disappointed supporters who want him to back a People’s Vote by saying a “good Brexit plan” would be a “catalyst for economic transformation” in the UK.
The Labour leader told business leaders his Brexit plan would include a “radical programme of investment” and fundamental changes to the way the economy works.
Corbyn, who is under pressure from much of his party to push for a second referendum in an effort to halt Brexit, insisted that leaving the EU would offer the chance to reshape Britain.
He took aim at tax cuts for businesses, orporate bonuses and inequality which had not seen wealth “trickle down” to the poor.
He told the CBI conference in London that “business as usual isn’t working” and they should back the changes needed to create a fairer society.
“To meet the greatest challenges facing our country today, we shouldn’t fear change, we should embrace it,” he told the assembled captains of industry.
“Deep-seated change is needed to avoid a damaging Brexit that will hurt enterprise, jobs and living standards, and instead use it as a catalyst for economic transformation.
“Change is needed to prevent the destruction of our environment that endangers all of our futures.
“And change is needed to tackle the huge inequality that has distorted the economy and disfigured our society.”
Labour is set to reject the deal prime minister Theresa May has brought back from Brussels.
Corbyn said: “A good Brexit plan for this country is not just about what can be negotiated with Brussels, it must also include a radical programme of investment and real change across our regions and nations.
“In 2016 the country voted to leave the EU against the economic backdrop of post-crash Britain: a million families using food banks, over four million children living in poverty and real wages that are lower today than they were in 2010.
“Wealth hasn’t trickled down. Instead, rigid and outdated economic thinking has helped create a situation where 20% of Britain’s wealth is in the hands of just 1% of the population.”
He called for workers to be given a stronger say in the running of companies and a higher level of public investment in infrastructure, education, skills and new technologies.
And he said the largest firms “will pay a bit more towards the common good”.