Autumn Statement: ‘The deficit is higher than five years ago’, says Mikes Gapes MP

PUBLISHED: 18:53 03 December 2014 | UPDATED: 09:24 04 December 2014

George Osborne

George Osborne

2013 Getty Images

Mike Gapes MP has called Wednesday’s Autumn Statement a further example of “broken promises” made by Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne and Prime Minister David Cameron.

Reaction to Mr Osborne’s speech has centered stamp duty reforms which will be implemented from midnight on Wednesday (3).

The amount owed by the buyer will be more graduated rather than jumping at certain price levels.

Mr Osborne claimed the UK would be “into the black” by 2010/20.

Mike Gapes, MP for Ilford South, poured scorn on the idea the country was anywhere close to reducing the deficit.

Speaking to the Recorder, he said: “David Cameron and George Osborne have broken all the promises they have made on the economy.

“The chancellor said he was going to balance the books in five years’ time [in 2010] but in fact the deficit is higher.

“Borrowing is up too. Over this parliament the government have borrowed £219 billion more than they had forecast in 2010. It has got worse and worse.”

But Iain Duncan Smith, MP for Chingford and Woodford Green, said the new forecasts for the economy showed the government’s long-term plan is working.

“Only with a strong and healthy economy that families here in Chingford and Woodford Green can have economic security for the future,” he said.

“We must carry on working through our plan and stay on course to prosperity.”

Mr Duncan Smith also pointed to employment being on the rise with more than 500,000 jobs forecast this year.

However, Mr Gapes said this was due to many workers being in temporary contracts.

“Unemployment is down but real wages are not increasing,” he said. “Many of the people who are in jobs are in low-paid or temporary contracts.”

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