STALYBRIDGE and Hyde MP Jonathan Reynolds fears the Conservative Budget risks “catapulting the country back into recession.”
Earlier this week Chancellor George Osborne delivered his first Budget since the formation of the Conservative – Liberal Democrat coalition.
The measure introduced included:
- Plans to increase VAT to 20 per cent from 2001.
- Two year pay freeze for public sector workers.
- Freeze on child benefit for three years.
- End of Child Tax Credits for families earning more than £40,000.
The detail of the Budget has prompted some fears that the measures will impact on economic growth, lead to a reduction in employment and harm vital public services.
Commenting on the Budget, Mr Reynolds said: “The chancellor may be peddling the myth that this is a budget that is both tough and fair – but there is nothing fair about this budget. And he is wrong to say that there is no alternative.
“This budget will put the employment of residents in areas like ours at serious risk. And it suggests, unbelievably, that - once again - unemployment in the North will simply be ‘a price worth paying’ to this Conservative Government.
“The freezing of public sector pay and child benefit and the increase in VAT are just some of the measures that will have a very real impact on the daily lives of families in our area.
“And this is the tip of the iceberg – with the budget outlining deep cuts to government departments.
“These Conservative cuts are too big and too soon – and risk catapulting the country back into recession.
“The Labour Government understood the importance of investing into the economy, in order to lessen the impact of the worst global recession for many years. And that’s the reason why there have been fewer business closures in the UK than expected and why unemployment is lower here than in the US or Europe. Without the stimulus we would have been in a far worse situation.
“Of course as a country we need to make demanding financial decisions to ensure the deficit is reduced – but we can’t forget the importance of economic growth. Increasing economic growth is the only realistic way to lower the deficit to create as secure long-term future and to do that we must invest in employment and jobs.
“This budget is a financial gamble – but the stakes are too high for this reckless approach.”
Published June 24, 2010.