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Budget Resolutions and Economic Situation — Amendment of the Law

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:14 pm on 22nd March 2016.

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Photo of Rachel Reeves Rachel Reeves Labour, Leeds West 3:14 pm, 22nd March 2016

The Budget was a story of missed targets for the Chancellor and missed opportunities for our country and, like the Budget of 2012, it is rapidly turning into a total mess. I am pleased to see some of the U-turns, but much more is needed.

I associate myself with the remarks of my hon. Friend Mr Wright, the Chair of the Business, Innovation and Skills Committee. He spoke powerfully about the importance of rebalancing our economy. That is so much needed, especially after some of the numbers we saw in the Budget last week. As a result of the lower productivity, the lower exports and the other things my hon. Friend spoke about, economic growth has been revised down for every single year of this Parliament. A staggering £71 billion has been knocked off our tax revenues. As a result, the Government are now set to borrow an extra £38 billion over the next five years. That is why, after breaking his promise to clear the deficit in the last Parliament, the Chancellor has now broken his pledge to bring the debt down as a share of GDP in this Parliament as well.