London: UK Chancellor Jeremy Hunt appeared to rule out tax cuts in his economic statement next month, saying that higher interest rates had added as much as 30 billion pounds ($36.6 billion) a year to the cost of servicing the national debt.
Hunt told reporters at a briefing in Marrakech Friday that the financial position facing the UK is worse than in the spring.
Asked about tax cuts, Hunt said “we are not in that territory,” insisting there was no “shortcut” to lowering the burden of taxation.
In March, the Office for Budget Responsibility estimated that the chancellor had 6.5 billion pounds against his fiscal rule that debt must be falling as a share of GDP in five years. It was the smallest margin on record.
Hunt is expected to reserve any tax cuts for the budget in the spring, to help lift support for his Conservative Party ahead of a general election widely expected to be held next year.