Spring Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 1:17 pm on 13th March 2019.

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Photo of Philip Hammond Philip Hammond The Chancellor of the Exchequer 1:17 pm, 13th March 2019

While the hon. Gentleman is entitled to his point of view and often makes a valuable contribution to the debate, he has to be careful that he does not accidentally veer off-piste into “talking Britain down” syndrome. He talks about a collapse in business investment, but I hope he would agree that this is likely to be a cyclical reduction in business investment. If he talks to businesses, they will tell him that they are postponing investment decisions until they have greater clarity about the future. I agree; we cannot keep them hanging there forever. We need to give them clarity and certainty as quickly as possible. I believe we will do that in this House over the next few weeks, and when we do, I believe that the great majority of that investment—postponed, not cancelled—will flow back into our economy later this year.