Government debt reduction forecasts include inflation-linked fuel duty rises despite 13-year freeze

TSC questions independent economists

Eve Maddock-Jones
clock • 4 min read

The government's latest Autumn Statement is unlikely to meet targets to reduce the UK's debt and borrowing levels as the "fragile" forecast includes unlikely fiscal policies, including the re-introduction of inflation-linked annual fuel duties hikes, economists told the Treasury Select Committee.

In an oral evidence hearing yesterday (28 November), a panel of independent economists were quizzed by TSC chair Harriett Baldwin on their views on last week's Autumn Statement. One of the three economic priorities outlined by the government in the executive summary of the Statement was to reduce the size of the national debt, but when asked if this goal had been addressed, Paul Johnson, director of the Institute for Fiscal Studies, said it had not. "Debt is rising a little bit at the moment and is set to stabilise at 93% of national income. That is despite the fact that tax revenues ...

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