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Tue, 19 January 2021

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Bank of England chief Mark Carney to stay on through 'turbulent' Brexit, says Philip Hammond

Bank of England chief Mark Carney to stay on through 'turbulent' Brexit, says Philip Hammond
3 min read

Bank of England governor Mark Carney has agreed stay on to help guide the UK economy through the "turbulent period" after Brexit, the Chancellor has announced.

Mr Carney has led the Bank of England since 2013 and was originally due to step down in 2018 after five years in the job.

He agreed to stay in post until June 2019 in the wake of Britain's vote to leave the European, but Philip Hammond on Tuesday confirmed that he had asked the finance chief Governor to once again extend his tenure.

Mr Hammond told MPs: "I can now announce to the House that I have been discussing with the Governor his ability to be able to serve a little  longer in post in order to ensure continuity through what could be quite a turbulent period for our economy in the early summer of 2019.

"And I can tell the House today that the Governor has agreed, despite various personal pressures, to conclude his term in June. That he will continue until the end of January 2020 in order to help support continuity in our eocnomy during this period."

In a letter to the Chancellor, Mr Carney said: "I recognise that during this critical period, it is important that everyone does everything they can to support a smooth and successful Brexit.

"Accordingly, I am willing to do whatever I can in order to promote both a successful Brexit and an effective transition at the Bank of England and I can confirm that I would be honoured to extend my term to January 2020."

The Bank of England governor has frequently sparked the ire of Brexiteers, who have accused him of painting an unncessarily gloomy forecast of Britain's economy after it leaves the EU.

He warned last month that leaving the European Union without a deal - as favoured by some Tory eurosceptics - would be "highly undesirable" and could lead to major trade disruption and higher prices.

Reacting to Mr Carney's reappointment today, leading Conservative Brexiteer Jacob Rees-Mogg claimed the Governor had played "ducks and drakes with his term of appointment".

The MP told Sky News: "It was meant to be eight years. He said for family reasons he could only do five years. Then he extended it, now he's extended it again.

"I think the governorship of the Bank of England is too important a post to be politicised as sadly he's done or to be muddled about with in this way. I think it's very undignified and reflects very poorly on him."

The Chancellor also announced on Tuesday that he had reappointed Sir Jon Cunliffe for a fresh stint as the Bank of England's deputy governor.

Mr Hammond said he was confident Sir Jon's "extensive experience will continue to be a valuable asset to the Bank of England".




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