Copeland MP warns of further Tory austerity

4th February 2015

Copeland MP and Labour’s Shadow Health Minister, Jamie Reed, today warned of the potentially devastating consequences to the Cumbrian economy as a result of the biggest spending cuts of any major advanced economy in the world if the Tories win the next election. 

A new report published today by the independent think-tank, the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS), says that the worst spending cuts are still to come for the United Kingdom. The report warns that the UK’s financial situation still has “a long way to go”. 

The IFS report says that cuts will have to increase from £38.3bn (9.5%) to £51.4bn (14.1%), in order to meet plans for departmental spending cuts as set out in December’s Autumn Statement. This would result in public spending falling to its lowest share of national income since at least 1948, and shrinking the public sector to the size it was in 1971. 

Copeland MP, Jamie Reed said: 

“This report conclusively shows that, if the Tories win the election in May, Britain will be facing the biggest spending cuts of any major advanced economy and the Cumbrian economy – so heavily dependent upon public spending – would be badly damaged, as would local businesses. Instead of this extreme approach, which will put our vital public services at risk, we need a balanced and fair way to get the deficit down while securing the future of our NHS, schools and other public services. 

“Labour recognises the need to make savings and increase governmental efficiency, and we are committed to making sensible spending cuts in non-protected areas, but we will also reverse David Cameron’s £3bn tax cut for the top one per cent of earners. In Cumbria, we need to grow our private sector – not shrink it by draining demand out of it. 

“Labour’s economic plan will ensure that we can earn our way to rising living standards for everyone, not just a few at the very top. This way, we will be able to cut the deficit every year as we balance the books and get the national debt falling as soon as possible in the next Parliament. I want to build an opportunity economy for everyone. 

“George Osborne’s failure to boost productivity and wages is the reason why his economic plan has not only failed working people, but failed on the deficit too.”

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