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Surplus Target and Corporation Tax

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 4:27 pm on 4th July 2016.

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Photo of George Osborne George Osborne Chancellor of the Exchequer and First Secretary of State 4:27 pm, 4th July 2016

We have to be realistic about the economic shock that the referendum result has created, which is acknowledged not just by the Bank Governor but by many independent forecasters—it is reflected in the financial markets. It will have an impact on the public finances, which will partly be cyclical, but also partly structural. In the end, a structural deficit—my hon. Friend, who is a good fiscal conservative, will know this—needs to be addressed through either reduced spending or higher taxes over time. Obviously, as a Conservative, I tend to look at the spending solution rather than the tax one, but that is what happens when there is a structural deficit, as we know to our cost in this country. Let us wait for the OBR to make its assessment in the autumn, then we can collectively decide how to proceed.