Chancellor Jeremy Hunt to deliver spring budget on 15 March

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budget British Chancellor of the Exchequer Jeremy Hunt talks to a television crew outside the BBC headquarters in London, Britain November 18, 2022. REUTERS/Henry Nicholls
Jeremy Hunt will deliver the spring budget on 15 March. Photo: Henry Nicholls/Reuters

UK chancellor Jeremy Hunt will set out a spring budget on 15 March 2023, the Treasury has announced.

In a written statement he said: "Today I can inform the House that I have asked the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) to prepare a forecast for 15 March 2023, to accompany a spring budget.

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"This forecast, in addition to the forecast that took place in November 2022, will fulfil the obligation for the OBR to produce at least two forecasts in a financial year, as is required by legislation."

The major statement will include forecasts of the economy as it tips into what is widely expected to be a long recession.

It will also include details of possible further tax changes and spending cuts ⁠— as hundreds of thousands of public servants strike over real-terms pay cuts.

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Hunt delivered his first budget as chancellor last month, as the government sought to restore the UK’s economic credibility following Kwasi Kwarteng’s disastrous mini-budget.

There was also a lot of controversy following that budget due to the lack of forecasts alongside the mini-budget delivered by ex-prime minister Liz Truss and Kwarteng.

Rishi Sunak and his chancellor faced a backlash from some Tory MPs over the tax-rising budget even as economists questioned the credibility of the planned spending cuts, many of which have been pushed back past the next general election.

Defence spending is likely to figure in some of the decision-making and debate ahead of the spring statement, as the Government updates the integrated review of defence and foreign policy.

At the last budget, Mr Hunt had said he would maintain the defence budget at at least 2% of GDP.

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