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2012 Autumn Statement: the political reaction

Despite announcing a stalling of economic growth and higher than expected levels of borrowing in his 2012 Autumn Statement, Chancellor George Osborne was keen to emphasise that the UK is on the ‘right track’ and that turning back now would be a ‘disaster’ for the UK economy.

Mr Osborne stated, ‘It’s taking time, but the British economy is healing’.

However, responding to the Chancellor’s speech, Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls warned that an average family with children and an income of £20,000 a year will be ‘worse off’ as a result of the measures.

‘Today after two and a half years we can see, and people can feel in the country, the true scale of this Government’s economic failure’, he said.

Meanwhile, TUC General Secretary Brendan Barber commented, ‘Cuts, austerity and squeezed living standards stretch seemingly without end into the future. What is missing today is any vision of a future economy that can deliver decent jobs and living standards – it’s pain without purpose’.