The news that Britain’s economy is halfway into recession, after shrinking 0.2% in the last quarter, comes ahead of next week’s autumn statement.
Chancellor Jeremy Hunt has blamed the invasion of Ukraine, and Russia’s ‘weaponisation’ of gas suppliers, for hitting growth and pushing up inflation.
Hunt also warns there is a ‘tough road ahead’, and some ‘extremely difficult decisions’ (a sign he is determined to slash spending and hike taxes, even though that will hurt the economy).
Hunt says: “We are not immune from the global challenge of high inflation and slow growth largely driven by Putin’s illegal war in Ukraine and his weaponisation of gas supplies.
“I am under no illusion that there is a tough road ahead – one which will require extremely difficult decisions to restore confidence and economic stability. But to achieve long-term, sustainable growth, we need to grip inflation, balance the books and get debt falling. There is no other way.
“While the world economy faces extreme turbulence, the fundamental resilience of the British economy is cause for optimism in the long run.”