22 May 2024
Dame Harriett Baldwin welcomes IMF confirmation that the Government’s economic plan is working

Dame Harriett Baldwin welcomes the good news on the economy and highlights yesterday’s IMF report which confirms that Government measures on investment tax reliefs for businesses to boost investment, the expansion of childcare, and active labour market policies are the reasons behind it. The Government's economic plan is working.

Dame Harriett Baldwin (West Worcestershire) (Con)

I welcome the Minister’s statement, which was crammed with useful facts and statistics. Yesterday, our Committee met representatives of the IMF in private, and we had a very interesting and informative discussion. As for yesterday’s report, the IMF points out that none of this good economic news would be happening had it not been for decisions made in previous Budgets. In particular, it states that the Government

“have delivered several helpful measures over the last three budgets…investment tax reliefs for businesses to boost investment, an expansion of childcare, and active labor market policies.”

This good news is not happening by accident; it is happening because a plan is in place, and the plan is working. Does the Minister agree?

The Economic Secretary to the Treasury (Bim Afolami)

I do agree, but let me draw attention to a specific point that is often ignored. The Chancellor’s decisions over the last two fiscal events have set the country up for growth in the future. My hon. Friend mentioned the policy on business expensing; that was a £10 billion tax cut for business. She mentioned childcare policies; those have helped millions of working families up and down the country. It is because of the cumulative effect of a series of important measures that we are able to stand up here today and say that while we are not there yet, the economy is starting to turn a corner.