“ REALLY GROUND-BREAKING ANNOUNCEMENTS”
RT HON DAME CHERYL GILLAN MP WELCOMES THE JOB SUPPORT SCHEME, THE EXTENDED GUARANTEE ON CBILs, THE PAY AS YOU GROW SCHEME AND THE MEASURES ON VAT – BUT REMINDS THE CHANCELLOR ABOUT BORROWING AND THE ‘MICAWBER PRINCIPLE’
“ Really ground-breaking announcements,” was the verdict of Chesham & Amersham’s MP, the Rt Hon Dame Cheryl Gillan MP as the Chancellor told the House of Commons about the measures he will introduce to support the UK economy, today, Thursday 24 September.
Whilst welcoming the targeted job support scheme, the extended guarantee on CBILs [Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme], the Pay As You Grow scheme and the measures on Value Added Tax, Rt Hon Dame Cheryl Gillan MP reminded the Chancellor about borrowing and the need to follow the ‘Micawber Principle’ described by Charles Dickens in David Copperfield.
Dame Cheryl asked:
“ Can I add my congratulations to the Chancellor of the Exchequer on today’s really ground-breaking announcements and particularly for focusing support on viable jobs and ensuring that that support is going where it is most needed? The extended guarantee on CBILs, the Pay As You Grow scheme and the measures on VAT will be warmly welcome by individuals and businesses in Chesham & Amersham. But, can he remember the ‘Micawber Principle’? ‘Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure 19 pounds, 19 shillings and sixpence: result, happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds and sixpence: result, misery.’ What can he say to my constituents who ask ‘How are we going to pay for this enormous bill?’ and how can he ensure that we provide value for money for the taxpayer?”
Rt Hon Rishi Sunak MP replied:
“ Well, my Rt Hon Friend is absolutely right and I am grateful for her instruction to me on the fiscal maths that we are grappling with. She is absolutely right, that as we move our way through this crisis, the nature of our response has to change. It is simply not sustainable or affordable to continue to provide the level of support that we did at the beginning of this crisis. That is why our support is now more targeted and focused on where it can make most difference. That will mean that we can’t do absolutely everything that everybody needs or wants, but we will be able to focus it where it can make the most difference, so that as quickly as possible we can get our economy growing again and ensure that the maths that she outlines starts to work in our future, because it can’t be that we borrow at this level forever, we must get our borrowing back under control and eventually get our debt falling again.”
Dame Cheryl added, “ Although the Chancellor sadly cannot help everyone facing financial hardship because of the virus, he has gone a long way towards safeguarding jobs. However, he also needs to eventually balance the books and he will eventually have to ensure that we can control the country’s finances without resorting to punitive taxation or other measures.”