Growth figures show government must do more to control the deficit and more to help business

Mark Littlewood comments on the latest growth figures

Commenting on the latest economic growth figures released today, Mark Littlewood, Director General at the Institute of Economic Affairs, said:

“These are not heroic growth figures by any means. If the numbers are to be believed, it will be a struggle to meet the Office for Budget Responsibility’s forecast for 2011. And it has already been revised downwards once.

“If growth remains sluggish, the government will need to go further in reducing public spending in order to hit its deficit reduction target

“Much more also needs to be done in order to ensure we create a better climate for business. Nothing like enough is being done to remove the regulatory red tape burden which impacts particularly highly on SMEs. Taking five years to edge towards balancing the state’s budget is a very modest ambition. Getting the state’s finances under control is necessary, but is not a sufficient condition for supercharging economic growth.”


To arrange an interview with Mark Littlewood, IEA Director General, please contact Ruth Porter, Communications Director, 077 5171 7781, 020 7799 8900,


Notes to editors

In March 2011, the Office for Budget Responsibility downgraded its growth forecasts for the year from 2.1% to 1.7%. Please see Economic and Fiscal Outlook (2011), OBR.

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