Osborne backs Alexander on UK credit rating

City A.M. Reporter
TREASURY secretary Danny Alexander yesterday played down the importance of the UK’s top-notch credit rating, which could be pressured as the government struggles to achieve its deficit cutting aims with the country stuck in recession.

Chancellor George Osborne and his Lib Dem deputy Alexander stressed the need to support economic growth alongside reducing a hefty fiscal deficit, but gave no suggestion that the government would relax its programme of cuts.

“The credit rating is not the be-all and end-all,” Alexander told BBC radio in comments broadcast yesterday morning.

Asked about Alexander’s statement, Osborne said in televised comments: “Danny Alexander and I completely agree. The credit rating is important but it’s also important to have the right economic policies. That’s what really matters and the credit rating reflects that.”

Labour’s Rachel Reeves said: “Just 10 days ago George Osborne desperately tried to claim that a statement from one credit rating agency meant the world had confidence in his policies, even though Britain is one of just two G20 countries in a double-dip recession.”