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Osborne sets date for next Budget

The next Budget will be on March 23 next year, Chancellor George Osborne said.

Mr Osborne told the Commons Treasury Committee that he was giving four months advance notice of the date.

He added: "You can put that in your diary."

Meanwhile, Mr Osborne has rejected claims that he exaggerated the scale of the financial crisis facing Britain to justify massive public spending cuts.

Giving evidence to the Commons Treasury Committee, the Chancellor insisted that he had been forced to take drastic action to take the country out of the "financial danger zone".

However, he was taken to task by the committee chairman, Conservative Andrew Tyrie, who said his claim that Britain had been "on the brink of bankruptcy" was "a bit over the top".

Mr Tyrie questioned Mr Osborne's claims that his emergency Budget last June had been "progressive", accusing him of "over-egging it a bit".

"Maybe the tough measures on the deficit and also the effort to make the Budget fair would have come across more clearly if they hadn't been obscured in debate of claim and counter claim," he said.

"I think there is something there to look at when making these remarks which do look to me more like the language of opposition than of government. Tell it as it is."

Mr Osborne insisted that the situation he inherited when the coalition Government took office in May had been "incredibly serious".


From Belfast Telegraph