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Orders of the Day — Finance Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:25 pm on 20th April 2004.

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Photo of Mr Howard Flight Mr Howard Flight Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury 3:25 pm, 20th April 2004

Does the hon. Gentleman agree that the major change in the past 10 years has been from the forces of globalisation? In the prior periods to which he referred, in more closed economies, inflation could build up more easily, leading to the stop-go cycles that he mentioned. The crucial change, as the Bank of England would admit, is that with open, global economies it is much more difficult for inflation to ignite. Indeed, the Bank of England would argue that the fact that the inflation target has been met has not been the result of a magical ability to manage inflation to that level, but largely the result of international forces. Surely that is the great change.