The UK’s finances are in a mess, public services are on their knees and households are struggling. The only thing that is growing is doom and gloom.
73% of Battersea constituents who completed my cost-of-living survey are worried about the current economic outlook for our country. The UK economy is in recession, inflation is at a 40-year high and two weeks ago the Bank of England announced the largest interest rate rise for three decades.
Households in Battersea are facing a massive squeeze in living standards and 92% of those surveyed don’t believe the government is doing enough. That’s not surprising given today’s economic statement.
It should have focused on creating a fairer tax system, making contributions proportional to wealth. The government could have scrapped tax loopholes like non-dom status as well focusing on securing a global pact to tackle tax dodging by big businesses so multinationals using tax havens don’t get out of paying their fair share. Likewise, they could have invested in our public services.
Instead, the government decided to raise taxes which will disproportionately impact people on low incomes, cut public services and increased the energy price cap by 20%.
The Prime Minister claimed that the public sector is in “the safest of hands”, but today’s statement made clear that this chaotic Conservative government have fumbled it.
Whilst the effects of the pandemic and Putin’s illegal war are undeniably influencing the economic outlook, Tory party policy has exacerbated their impact. The UK is the only G7 economy that is smaller today than pre-pandemic and the UK is forecast to have the lowest growth in the OECD over the next two years.
This week, members of Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee said that Brexit is having a harmful impact on the economy. It’s not surprising that 84% of Battersea constituents who completed my cost-of-living survey feel worse off since the 2019 General Election since this is when Johnson’s Brexit deal was passed. Far from “oven ready”, this disastrous deal has created uncertainty and chaos for millions.
The public have lost confidence in the Tories handling of the economy. The government doesn’t have a credible long-term economic plan. After 12 years of Tory government, the country is back at square one with new austerity measures. But this time there is nothing more to cut. We need a General Election.