Steve Beasant

Liberal Democrat Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for Great Grimsby and Councillor for the East Marsh Learn more

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OBR slashing productivity shows Brexit utopia less plausible than ever

by Steve Beasant on 10 October, 2017

The Office of Budgetary Responsibility (OBR) has admitted that forecasts for the UK’s future productivity will have to be significantly slashed.

According to the OBR, recent falls in productivity have “almost certainly” been exacerbated by the vote to leave the EU.

It comes as figures published today showed the UK’s trade deficit in goods reached a record high in August.

Liberal Democrat Leader Vince Cable commented:

“This worrying fall in future productivity growth will reduce the Chancellor’s leeway to boost spending in the Autumn Budget, including on vital infrastructure and public services.

“According to the OBR, recent falls in productivity are almost certainly linked to the Brexit vote. But the causes run much deeper, including a chronic failure by businesses and government to invest, and a reliance on consumer spending propped up by debt.

“The challenges posed by negotiating Brexit will only distract us from addressing these underlying problems.

“Combined with figures today showing the UK trade deficit is widening, the economic utopia promised by the Brexiteers looks less plausible than ever.

“This shows again why the public must be given the final say over the deal the government negotiates, with a chance to exit from Brexit.”

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