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UK warned of further spending cuts

February 26, 2016 6:07 pm

Chancellor George Osborne has warned he may have to make fresh cuts to public spending in next month’s budget.

Mr Osborne told BBC political editor Laura Kuenssberg that global economic turmoil and slower growth meant “we may need to undertake further reductions”.

He slowed the pace of cuts in the last spending review, but said more savings were required as figures showed the UK economy was smaller than expected.

Labour’s John McDonnell said it was “a total humiliation” for Mr Osborne.

The chancellor is due to make his Budget statement on 16 March.

Speaking exclusively to the BBC’s political editor during a visit to China, Mr Osborne said he would rather look for extra cuts now than risk breaking his own manifesto commitment to achieve a surplus in the budget by the end of this Parliament.

The chancellor did not completely rule out raising taxes in the event of a further slowdown in growth, but said that now was not the time for “significant” tax hikes.