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Clegg warns of challenges in 2012

Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has warned 2012 will pose “many great challenges” as the Coalition attempts to cut the UK’s budget deficit.

In his new year message, the Liberal Democrat leader said the economy remains the party’s “number one priority” next year.

He said: “This time last year I spoke about how the most important job for Liberal Democrats was dealing with the economic problems we inherited. 12 months on, that task remains the number one priority for our party and the Coalition.

“We have had to make some very difficult decisions, but they’ve been the right ones for the long term good of our country. But that economic rescue mission is not over yet.

“The next year will be one that poses many great challenges for everyone in the UK, but I know we must continue to do what’s right for our country.”

Clegg (pictured) also sought to highlight areas where the LibDems had influenced Government policy in the past year – including the decision to introduce the ‘triple lock’, which links the state pension to earnings, prices or 2.5 per cent, whichever is highest.

He also said the Government will pursue further tax reforms in 2012 in an effort to make the system “fairer”.

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