Remember, remember, 6 November: Sajid Javid sets date for Budget 2019
Chancellor Sajid Javid has revealed the 2019 Budget will take place on Wednesday, 6 November and could contain a raft of emergency measures to help the economy in the event of no deal.
If the UK does leave the European Union on the scheduled 31 October departure date, it will be the first post-Brexit budget, which Javid will use to outline his plan to overhaul the UK’s infrastructure and boost spending on schools and hospitals.
“This will be the first Budget after leaving the EU. I will be setting out our plan to shape the economy for the future and triggering the start of our infrastructure revolution,” Javid said.
“This is the right and responsible thing to do – we must get on with governing.”
The Treasury said that if the UK crashes out of the EU without a deal, it would “take early action to support the economy, businesses and households”. It said this would likely push back the Budget to “the weeks thereafter”.
The announcement comes with the spectre of a General Election looming and with uncertainty over whether the UK will leave the EU on 31 October.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has repeatedly promised the Brexit date will be met, but MPs have passed legislation that will force the government to seek an extension unless an exit deal materialises.
City A.M. sources have suggested the Budget will form part of an election campaign as Johnson seeks to gain a parliamentary majority for his government.
Since becoming chancellor in July, Javid has pledged to spend tens of billions of pounds extra on public services and infrastructure in the coming years. This includes £14bn more than originally planned under ex-chancellor Philip Hammond next year.
The Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) think tank has warned the extra spending means the Tories are on track to breach their own spending rules. The rules say that the deficit – the amount the government spends over the money it raises in taxes – cannot rise above two per cent of GDP.
Should a no-deal Brexit occur, the IFS has warned, the UK would likely have to borrow close to £100bn in 2020-21, meaning spending would be twice as high as the limit.
Later today a Queen’s Speech is set to outline the government’s domestic agenda as parliament returns from a brief suspension, officially called a prorogation.
City A.M. exclusively revealed that the legislation is due to include a Financial Services Bill to ensure the sector remains a jewel in Britain’s crown after Brexit.
A source said yesterday: “We’re determined the City will stay ahead of the pack after Brexit.”
(Image credit: Getty)