Tories pledge light touch ad regulation

The Conservative Party is pitching itself to advertising professionals by pledging that a Tory government would regulate the creative industries with a lighter touch.

George Osborne, the shadow chancellor, also suggested a Tory government would lower the tax burden on the industries to help them stay ahead of foreign competitors.

Inviting workers to help shape the Tories' policies on the sector over the next year, Osborne said there was a "genuine philosophical difference" between his party and Gordon Brown. Brown, he said, believed subsidies and targets were the way to make people more creative.

Osborne pledged: "We would establish the right framework, then leave you to get on with being creative and growing your businesses."

Speaking in Oxford, the shadow chancellor also warned the BBC not to abuse its privileged position and huge resources to crowd out smaller players. He said: "I am concerned that it is stifling the growth of innovative new companies that can't compete with BBC budgets."