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UK opposition Labour party pledge productivity fix in latest pitch to business

British opposition Labour Party Leader Starmer delivers a speech near Bristol

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's opposition Labour Party will pledge to fix Britain's stagnating productivity at a conference for businesses on Thursday, its latest charm offensive to companies and investors ahead of a national election expected this year.

Keir Starmer, leader of the left-leaning party, will tell assembled executives that Labour will "get under the bonnet to fix an unprecedented stagnation in British productivity growth."

Labour, which leads Prime Minister Rishi Sunak's Conservatives by around 20 percentage points in opinion polls, has sent senior policy chiefs to the World Economic Forum in Davos as part of Starmer's pitch to the business community.

He will also tell the conference that Labour has changed and is now the "party of business", offering stability under his leadership, in contrast to the "permanent cycle of crisis" which has seen five Conservative prime ministers in eight years.

"The depth of the changes we've made to transform the Labour Party's relationship with business is something I take immense pride in," he will say, according to extracts released by the party.

Labour will also launch a plan on Thursday called "Labour's Partnership with Business for Growth," setting out more details of how to improve skills in the economy, back businesses and create economic stability.

Ahead of the conference, the party's finance policy chief Rachel Reeves said that Labour would champion Britain's financial sector and not bring in a new cap on bankers' bonuses.

Labour also wants closer economic ties with the European Union, including deeper co-operation with the bloc on financial services.

(Reporting by Alistair Smout)