23/04/13

  • Public sector net borrowing was £15.1bn in March 2013, £1.6bn lower net borrowing than in March 2012
  • After removing the effects of special transactions, public sector net borrowing was virtually the same as in 2011/12, at £120.6bn
  • Public sector net debt at the end of March 2013 was 75.4% of GDP

Commenting on the Public Sector Finances for March 2013, published today by the ONS, David Kern, Chief Economist at the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC), said:

“The headline figure shows an improvement compared with a year ago, but was only marginally better than the estimates published by the OBR at the time of the Budget. For the entire financial year, the deficit remained virtually unchanged. Government spending in the financial year rose by 1.8% in nominal terms, only a modest real fall when factoring in inflation.

“Britain’s structural deficit remains unacceptably high, and the increase in the country’s net debt reinforces the case for adhering to a realistic deficit cutting plan. The Chancellor should persevere with real cuts in spending, while prioritising measures that will enhance the productive potential of the economy. If the Chancellor demonstrates continued commitment to a realistic fiscal plan, the markets will allow him greater flexibility. He can then choose whether to use the flexibility that his own plans provide.” 

Ends 

Notes to editors:

ONS Public Sector Finances: http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/rel/psa/public-sector-finances/march-2013/stb---march-2013.html

The British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) sits at the heart of a powerful nationwide network of 53 Accredited Chambers of Commerce, serving over 104,000 businesses across the UK, which employ over five million people. For more information visit: www.britishchambers.org.uk

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