Budget: Economy

Economy expected to slow over three years

scottish economyBritain’s economy continues to grow and confound those who seek to talk it down, said Chancellor Philip Hammond, though he was forced to admit that growth is slowing.

Delivering his second Budget he said Britain was facing a new relationship Europe which was full of change, full of challenges and full of new opportunities.

The chancellor said the UK is working “to achieve a deep and special partnership” with Europe and to ensure the country is ready for every outcome of Brexit negotiations.

He is setting aside another £3 billion for Brexit preparations over the next two years, in addition to the £700m already invested in Brexit preparations.

On forecasts for the economy, he said: “I am acutely aware that 1.4m people out of work is 1.4m too many. I welcome the OBR [Office for Budget Responsibility] forecast that there will be 600,000 more people in work by 2022,” he said.

The OBR points to a slowing of economic growth with for GDP to grow 1.5% in 2017, 1.4% 2018, 1.3% in 2019-20.

Borrowing is forecast to be £49.9bn this year – £8.4bn lower than forecast at the Spring Budget.

SNP’s Stewart Hosie tweeted that the “OBR has marked down GDP growth throughout the forecast period and debt has still not fallen. The Tory austerity plan has failed.”



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