The coalition’s economic plan has come under new criticism from business leaders throughout Britain as both the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) and the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) revised down their forecasts for the economy in 2012 and 2013 respectively.
The CBI said that it expected unemployment to rise whilst claiming that the economy would no longer grow by 0.6% this year, as it has previously predicted, but would instead shrink by 0.3%. The BCC changed their expectation for the economy to grow by just 1.2% in 2013, down from their previous estimate of 2%.
It’s the Chancellor, George Osborne, and the policies of the coalition Government that have come under fire for these figures.
Although the Chancellor argues there are plans to stimulate growth which are moving forward, critics say that not only are they happening too slowly, but they are not the most effective way of doing it either.
“Companies now accept they are operating in a tougher and more uncertain environment, but they need an enterprise-friendly government with bold policies if they are to drive recovery,” said the director general of the BCC, John Longworth. There have been calls by Labour to create a state-owned and operated lending bank which would give out money more readily than the high street banks that many businesses say have failed to help them stimulate the economy.
Meanwhile, the boss of the CBI, John Cridland, also said that more needed to be done by the government: “While we have got to get used to the fact that growth will be lower than it was before the crash, there are things we can do to boost growth. Measures to boost supply are needed, but there also needs to be measures that support households and household expenditure.”
It’s clear that people don’t feel enough is being done to stimulate the economy, and suggestions are now coming from all quarters, as are criticisms of the Chancellor’s current approach. However, the Conservatives are wary of appearing to perform a U-turn over this, and we may not see any real change of course despite the still failing economy.