Jobs and Growth

Part of Debate on the Address – in the House of Commons at 1:53 pm on 17th May 2012.

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Photo of David Davies David Davies Chair, Welsh Affairs Committee 1:53 pm, 17th May 2012

We are all aware, of course, that the Government are having to make some very tough and difficult decisions. Some of them may question some of those individual decisions, but let us be in no doubt about why we are in the present situation. In 1997, we handed over an economy with no deficit and a national debt of £350 billion that was being paid off. By 2007, before any banking crisis had taken effect, the debt had risen to £650 billion, because supporters of the previous Government were spending, at a rate of £30 billion to £40 billion a year, money that they simply did not have. We all know what happened then: after the banking crisis, they went on the biggest spending spree in financial history, which left us with a debt of £1 trillion on the books—probably twice that when private finance initiative commitments are included—and a deficit of £160 billion a year.