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Chancellor Jeremy Hunt To Make Emergency Budget Statement

Jeremy Hunt speaking to press outside BBC (Alamy)

3 min read

The new Chancellor is set to make an emergency statement on Monday setting, bringing forward the government's announcement on how it will fund some measures from its seismic "mini-Budget" announced last month.

In a statement, the Treasury said that Jeremy Hunt will make a statement today "bringing forward measures from the Medium-Term Fiscal Plan".

He is expected to deliver his statement at around 11:00am on Monday, followed by a Commons statement at around 3:30pm.

The full Budget is still set to be delivered as planned on 31 October.

Labour has referred to the announcement, made at around 6.00am on Monday, as a sign the government is in a state of "panic".

Pat McFadden, Labour's shadow chief secretary to the Treasury, told BBC Radio 4's Today programme: "I think it is evidence of the panic that the Government is in and the damage that has been caused over the last few weeks.

"Clearly ministers are now terrified of market reaction. They have concluded that they cannot wait until October 31.

"The country couldn’t carry on for the next two weeks in the way that we have been going.”

But Mel Stride, chair of the Treasury select committee, said the move was a "strong start" by the new Chancellor that showed he was "acting fast".

"Surprising markets positively on the upside with an early statement to [the House of Commons] today is a wise move," he wrote on Twitter.

"Message is ‘we get what needs to be done and it’s being sorted.’"

Former minister Victoria Atkins also praised the Chancellor's decision, telling the Today programme that Hunt is "getting a grip on the situation and is not afraid to make very difficult decisions".

She said: "In all of this, Conservative MPs are asking themselves, how we can best represent the interests of our constituents? What is best for the country? 

"If Jeremy is proposing or will propose some radical ideas in this statement, then that is something I'm sure colleagues will listen to very, very carefully, because we all realise that the last few weeks have not been as we would like them to be."

Hunt was appointed as Chancellor on Friday, replacing Kwasi Kwarteng who was sacked after being forced to rip up key sections of his mini-budget.

The government has already been forced to U-turn on several major parts of the mini-budget, including plans to abolish the 45p tax rate and halt the rise of corporation tax.

Over the weekend, Hunt signalled that more U-turns were likely, claiming that he is “not taking anything off the table” when it comes to scrapping mini-budget measures.

Liz Truss's future as prime minister remains in the balance, with many business leaders criticising her approach to government in recent days.

John Allan, the chairman of Tesco, called on the Conservatives "to look after those people suffering" and to set out a plan demonstrating how they will try to grow the economy.

He told the BBC on Sunday that Labour had already put forward some policy ideas on growing the UK economy, and wanted to hear "a concrete plan" from the government.

"I don't think we've seen a growth plan from the Conservatives, I hope we will… Labour's ideas are on the table, and many are attractive, but at the moment there's only one team on the field."

 

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