What time is the Spring Statement 2018?

The Spring statement will take place on March 13 and will see the Chancellor set out updated economic forecasts for the UK.

The statement is taking the place of The Budget – which has now been moved to autumn.

The Spring statement will most likely begin at 12.30pm and last around 20 minutes. The entire debate is likely to last two hours.

What did Chancellor Philip Hammond say in his Spring statement speech?

In his first spring statement to the House of Commons, Mr Hammond revealed that the Office for Budget Responsibility now expects state borrowing to be £45.2 billion this year – some £4.7 billion lower than predicted in November and £108 billion lower than in 2010.

The Government is set to run a “small” surplus on day-to-day spending in 2018/19, borrowing only for capital investment, said the Chancellor. And the Government is forecast to hit its borrowing target for 2020/21 with £15.4 billion headroom.

Debt is forecast to be 1% lower than expected at the time of last autumn’s Budget, peaking at 85.6% of GDP in 2017/18, before falling gradually to 77.9% in 2022/23.

Mr Hammond said the forecasts confirmed “the first sustained fall in debt for 17 years, a turning point in the nation’s recovery from the financial crisis of a decade ago. Light at the end of the tunnel”.

Spring statement: Philip Hammond

Spring statement: The Spring statement will most likely begin at 12.30pm

Mr Hammond hinted at the possibility that austerity will be eased in this autumn’s Budget.

He told MPs: “If, in the autumn, the public finances continue to reflect the improvements that today’s report hints at, then … I would have capacity to enable further increases in public spending and investment in the years ahead, while continuing to drive value for money to ensure that not a single penny of precious taxpayers’ money is wasted.”

Mr Hammond also rejected Labour “doom and gloom” over the state of the economy, saying the recession repeatedly forecast by shadow chancellor John McDonnell since 2010 had failed to materialise.

But shadow chancellor John McDonnell said Philip Hammond’s “complacency” was “astounding” as he responded to the Spring Statement.

Mr McDonnell told the Commons: “We face in every public service a crisis on a scale we’ve never seen before.”

Other points announced by Mr Hammond include:

The economy continues to grow, continues to create jobs and continues to beat expectations

The economy has grown for five consecutive years, and exceeded expectations in 2017.

The UK’s public finances have reached a turning point, with borrowing down and the first sustained fall in debt for 17 years

Since the Autumn budget, more than £1.5 billion allocated to departments and devolved administrations to prepare for Brexit in 2018-19

In April 2018 the National Living Wage will rise to £7.83

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