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Speed up UK austerity plans, says CBI

The Confederation of British Industry has called on the Government to bring forward plans to tackle the growing UK budget deficit.

The CBI says chancellor Alistair Darling should use his last Budget to set out more details of spending plans to boost confidence in the UK’s public finances and provide economic stability.

In a letter to Darling, CBI director-general Richard Lambert said delivering a detailed plan for balancing the books by 2016, two years earlier than planned, is the key to addressing concerns about the UK’s public finances and its AAA debt rating.

Lambert said:
“Investors are clearly jittery about sovereign debt, but are prepared to give the UK the benefit of the doubt until after the election.

“The UK’s deficit, though worryingly large, is still manageable, but the Government must act now to set out a convincing, credible pathway for balancing the books. It is critical that this Budget provides credibility and direction on the public finances, and creates the right conditions for businesses to drive economic growth.”

Liberal Democrat shadow chancellor Vince Cable says: “This submission highlights how dangerous the Government’s position is. The country can’t afford to have political parties playing politics with the public finances.

“The British people and the markets have the right to know how and when each political party will tackle the deficit.”


MPs blast social care system

The health committee is calling for reform of the social care system in England after its latest report says the current system is underfunded, discriminatory and severely rationed.


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