The government may continue the package of public spending cuts for five years longer than they originally planned to, according to Prime Minister David Cameron. When the coalition assumed power in 2010, Cameron laid out a five year plan of spending cuts designed to bring Britain’s budget under control. He wanted to reduce spending in the public sector to a point where Britain was no longer operating at a deficit.
However, he is now warning that economic recover may not be possible in that time, and said that if the coalition gains power again in 2015, when the next election is due, it will probably be necessary to continue the program of austerity for another five years.
This is not what a lot of people want to hear. There has been some recent good news about the economy, with predictions of growth through the remainder of 2012 and 2013, as well as drops in unemployment figures (though these have crept back up once again with the last two quarters of recession). People had begun to think that austerity would end soon, whilst others believe it is a contributing factor to the economic problems in the UK, rather than a solution.
This announcement comes as new polls reveal that public confidence in the government’s ability to fix the economy is at an all time low. Only 28% of people now believe that the coalition will be able to bring Britain out of the current economic crisis.
Ed Miliband has already spoken out about this approach, stating that “the Prime Minister is offering is more of the same – more of the same that is not working […] I think the Prime Minister should be giving hope to people, and not just promising more of the same – and more of the same of a grim kind.”