Government borrowing stood at £18.6bn last month, down by £5.6bn from a year ago, but still the fourth highest April borrowing since records began in 1993, according to official figures.
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said this morning that, despite the fall, government borrowing was £7.9bn more than in April 2019 before the pandemic struck.
The figures include the £3bn cost of the council tax rebate, which offered £150 to many households across the UK to help with soaring energy bills.
The ONS also estimates that April’s 1.25 per cent National Insurance rise will bring in around £18 billion this financial year.
Borrowing has been revised down by £7.2bn for the financial year to the end of March 2022 to £144.6bn, though it is still the third highest financial year for borrowing on record.
The figures also showed that interest payments on the Government’s borrowing stood at £4.4 billion last month, which was lower than the £4.9 billion seen a year earlier.
But interest payments are expected to soar going forward, due to rocketing levels of the Retail Prices Index measure of inflation used on Government debt payments, with June data set to show the full scale of the recent jump in inflation.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak said: “While we are doing what we can to help families deal with rising prices, inflation is also pushing up our spending on debt interest – which is expected to reach £83bn this year.
“We must take a balanced and responsible approach to support people now, while also not burdening future generations, and we’re on track to drive public debt down by 2024-25,” he added.