CIPFA warns chancellor on autumn statement pitfalls

by Accountancy Age Staff

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29 Oct 2012

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Steve Freer

CIPFA HAS ISSUED a report warning the chancellor of the various pitfalls he must avoid in his upcoming autumn statement.

The Long Downturn was published today by the institute for public finance accountants.

George Osborne is warned by CIPFA that he needs to place particular emphasis on stimulating growth, such as tax cuts or private sector investment. However, it adds that public sector spending cuts need to be managed with high levels of skill and care as public support for them is becoming strained.

Steve Freer, CIPFA's chief executive (pictured), said: "The chancellor is having to drive with one foot on the growth accelerator and the other on the austerity brake. The ongoing problems in the Eurozone are severe hazards on the road ahead.

"On growth, the story is much less positive. He is likely to be searching for more levers to stimulate the economy, but will also be mindful that these initiatives have to be paid for, potentially by further tightening of spending plans.

"The critical bottom line is that both strands of the strategy have to be working to deliver the deficit and debt reduction results required."

Earlier this month, official GDP figures showed that the UK economy grew by a higher-than-anticipated 1%, taking the country out of an official recession. 

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