Ed Miliband has called for financial services regulation to be tightened up and a reshaping of the banking sector to encourage small business growth.
In his speech to the CBI Annual Conference in London, the Labour Party leader accepted the previous government had depended too much on financial services for economic growth.
He also suggested that, fearful of being too excessive, previous governments had failed to adequately regulate the financial services.
Miliband added: "We need policy-makers and regulators who recognise that we need stronger rules but also that we need a culture that balances the need to support financial services with the need to protect our wider economy.
"And, change shouldn't just be about reducing risk but also about increasing opportunity."
He also called for more action to get banks supporting small businesses again and admitted the Labour government had failed to back industries outside of financial services.
Miliband said: "Both Richard [Lambert] and Paul Myners have suggested the case for greater public involvement in helping to finance the small business sector, for example through a new small business bank, like the ICFC (Industrial and Commercial Finance Corporation) created after the Second World War.
"Others have made the case for mutuals and for public/private structures of banking ownership, as we make decisions about the stakes we have in the banks."
Although he accepted the need to tackle the deficit, Miliband was also critical of the coalition government's strategy so far, saying it would not be "sensitive to changing economic circumstances".
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