Statement by the Chancellor hailed by companies but attacked by unions
Business groups welcomed the Chancellor’s statement, but unions were scathing, calling it “Robin Hood upside down”.
TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady said hard work, not wealth, should be rewarded, adding: ‘At the first opportunity Liz Truss is keeping wages up and lining the pockets of big business and bankers with the city.
“The pay cut party has struck again. This budget is a Robin Hood in reverse.
Tony Danker, chief executive of the CBI, described it as a turning point for the economy.
“Like Covid, the energy crisis has forced the government to spend heavily to protect people and businesses. This means that we have no choice but to rely on growth to allow us to do so.
“Today is the first day of a new approach to growth in the UK. Now we must seize the opportunity to make it count and bring growth to every corner of the UK. Fifteen years of anemic growth will not cannot be repeated.
“Taking action to revive the UK economy by starting construction of transport and green infrastructure projects shows immediate achievement. Planning reform is long overdue.
Unison general secretary Christina McAnea said: “The government has abandoned leveling for an all-out offensive to make the rich richer.
“In the midst of a huge cost of living crisis, now is not the time for doomed economic experiments.”
Stephen Phipson, Chief Executive of Make UK, said: “The Chancellor has clearly recognized that we are heading into very turbulent waters in the face of meteoric increases in energy and other costs, as well as a challenging international environment.
“Industry will welcome today’s statement which, on the back of energy support, contains a number of positive measures to help protect viable businesses from the worst impact of escalating costs and help to protect jobs.
“The focus on prioritizing growth with plans to accelerate planning reforms, boost infrastructure and investment is particularly welcome.”
Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: ‘This mini budget is unabashedly a budget for the rich, big business and the city – tax on top earners cut, corporation tax cut , investment bankers’ bonuses dropped.
“The city’s billionaires and bankers will once again wonder which tax haven to hide their money in, while millions of ordinary families continue to struggle to make ends meet.”
Neil Carberry, Chief Executive of the Confederation of Recruitment and Employment, said: “Putting business at the heart of the UK’s prosperity is always the right decision, and the Chancellor’s emphasis on this will have much appreciated by employers across the country.”