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Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak sees UK recession on scale ‘we have not seen’ – Gulf News

Britain’s Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak warned that the UK is headed right into a recession unprecedented in scale.
Image Credit: Reuters

London: The UK is headed right into a recession unprecedented in scale, Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak warned on Tuesday as he laid naked the extent of the financial price of the coronavirus.

“We are likely to face a severe recession, the likes of which we haven’t seen,” Sunak instructed the House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee on Tuesday. “It isn’t obvious that there will be an immediate bounce back” from a lockdown that’s “having a very significant impact on our economy,” he added.

The virus has compelled Sunak to undertake unprecedented measures, together with paying a portion of employees’ wages, in a bid to make sure that as a lot of the financial system stays intact as potential as soon as the disaster is over.

The authorities’s key aim, Sunak mentioned, was to protect productive capability to assist enhance the restoration.

“The question that occupies my mind, and indeed long term is probably more relevant, is you know what degree of long-term scarring there is on the economy,” he mentioned. “The longer the recession, it is likely the degree of that scarring will be greater.”

BoE warning

The Bank of England has predicted that a three-month lockown may result in a 14% hunch this yr – the deepest recession since the early 18th century. Still, the BOE and the Office for Budget Responsibility additionally foresaw a comparatively speedy bounceback in 2021 – a state of affairs many economists mentioned was overly-optimistic.

Figures revealed on Tuesday present the price of authorities assist is already approaching 40 billion kilos ($49 billion), whereas the authorities supporting some 10 million jobs. Even with that assist, claims for jobless advantages spiked by the most on document in April, in keeping with official knowledge revealed Tuesday.

“Although we’ve put unprecedented mitigating actions in place, I certainly won’t be able to protect every job and every business,” Sunak mentioned. The knowledge level towards the U.Okay. reaching a “double-digit” unemployment fee, he added.

He declined to invest on the doubtless dimension of this yr’s finances deficit, past saying it will likely be “significant by historic standards,” and added that it’s exhausting to foretell how massive the hit to tax income shall be.

He additionally mentioned no agency choices had been taken on a debt degree he acknowledged could be elevated. His feedback come amid rising stress on the authorities to deal with the fiscal harm left by the disaster by boosting financial development moderately than returning to the period of austerity.

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