By Peter McLaren-Kennedy • 13 November 2022 • 13:03
Rishi Sunak and Jeremy Hunt
Credit: Simon Walker / No 10 Downing Street flickr
Speaking to Sky News on Sunday, November 13, Jeremy Hunt the Chancellor of the Exchequer said that he “will be asking everyone for sacrifices” but recognises there is “only so much we can ask.”
In a complete U-turn from the policies proposed by his predecessor and then Prime Minister Liz Truss, Jeremy Hunt said: “Fairness will be reflected in the decisions that I take, that’s important because Britain is a decent country, a fair country, a compassionate country.
“We’re all going to be paying a bit more tax, I’m afraid.”
But he promised, the autumn statement will “not just be bad news” adding that his plan will be about both the short and the long-term.
He said he believes the public recognises “if you want to give people confidence about the future you have to be honest about the present.”
Hunt has vowed to bring down inflation, to control high energy prices and to put the economy back on a growth path.
He has promised more help with energy bills and has said spending cuts will be needed.
Saying that more money has been pumped into the NHS already,
The chancellor said his plan will help get the UK out of a recession as quickly and with as little pain as possible as he also promised help for energy bills not just this winter, but next.
But he also said spending cuts from government departments will be needed and hinted no more funding will be given to the NHS.
He said the government needs to do “everything we can to find efficiencies” within the NHS adding that he recognised the nurses and doctors “were under unbearable pressure.”
Providing inflation busting increases wasn’t the solution he said, as they are in themselves inflationary. He acknowledged the pressure people were under but said that tough decisions needed to be taken if the country was going to get the inflation rate down.
Amongst the latest changes being considered is the lowering of the 45p tax threshold according to the Sunday Telegraph. That could see the threshold fall to £125,000.
Members of Liz Truss’ former cabinet have called for spending cuts and no rises in taxes, saying that costs had risen dramatically and there was room to bring them down.
Labour’s Shadow Chancellor Rachel Reeves called for the backdating of a windfall tax saying that an extension could raise £50 billion, which she said could plug the budget hole.
Jeremy Hunt has worked hard to forewarn the electorate that the autumn statement will contain some pain, an attempt to make it more palatable when it is announced. But whether higher taxes are on the cards for Britain remains to be seen, as many within the party are still anti the idea.
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Originally from South Africa, Peter is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for the Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news.
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