[Un-allotted Half Day] — Future Government Spending

Part of Opposition Day – in the House of Commons at 3:31 pm on 4th March 2015.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of David Gauke David Gauke The Financial Secretary to the Treasury 3:31 pm, 4th March 2015

If we have any future announcements about the Arts Council budget, we will make them in the usual way.

As we have seen only today from the report of the Institute for Fiscal Studies, average household incomes are back to the levels they were at before the recession began and they are expected to grow by well above inflation this year, while income inequality is down and pensioner poverty is at record lows under this Government: our plan is working.

The Labour party claims that we are taking public spending back to the level of the 1930s, but let us look at the facts. Even on the assumption that 100% of our future consolidation comes from cuts to departmental expenditure, which is not the Conservative party’s approach, the Government’s plans will, as my hon. Friend Mr Jackson has pointed out, put spending on public services at their lowest real-terms level since 2002-03, so instead of the late 1930s, we are talking about the early 2000s—only 65 years out.