UK: Sunak gives himself time for his first budget decisions

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United Kingdom: Sunak gives himself time for his first budgetary arbitrations

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak in meeting with members of the new government

The new British Conservative Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has postponed until mid-November the presentation of long-awaited budgetary arbitrations to end the financial turbulence caused by the short-lived previous government, but also much feared in the midst of a social crisis.

The third head of government of the United Kingdom in 50 days takes control of Downing Street in an explosive social context due to soaring prices. The economic situation deteriorated further in September when former Prime Minister Liz Truss' promises of massive, unfunded tax cuts sent the markets into a panic, sending the pound plunging and rising. #x27;fly interest rates.

To calm the storm, the experienced Jeremy Hunt had been called to the Ministry of Finance and had already gone back on most of the measures announced. On October 3, he was to present a budget plan intended to reassure the long-term stability of public finances.

Reappointed to his post on Tuesday, Mr Hunt announced after the first meeting of the Council of Ministers that he had agreed with Mr Sunak that it would be prudent to postpone this presentation to November 17.

It is extremely important that this presentation be based on the most accurate economic forecasts and public finance forecasts possible, he explained on television.

According to the British press, Mr. Sunak, ex-banker and ex-finance minister who had himself warned during the summer of the harmful consequences of Mrs. Truss' program, wants to get involved in the preparation of these measures, while a return of austerity is feared.

The 42-year-old new Prime Minister, Britain's youngest head of government for 200 years, warned on Tuesday that tough decisions would be needed to right Liz Truss' mistakes.

The government will restore economic stability and will do so in a fair and compassionate way, Sunak assured parliament on Wednesday. We will always protect the most vulnerable, he added during MPs' question time, where just a week ago Ms Truss rejected any resignation, before throwing in the towel the next day.

Confirming the oblivion of the previous government's programme, the new leader also announced that he would restore the moratorium on the production of shale oil and gas in England, lifted by Liz Truss in the name of energy security in the context of the war in Ukraine.

He lent himself to this weekly exercise, sometimes very rowdy, in a serious, but relaxed way. Supported by his majority, he dodged awkward questions and sent stings to the Labor opposition who challenged him on the economic mistakes of his camp or on the past tax arrangements of his multimillionaire wife.

He had to explain himself to the return to the Ministry of the Interior of Suella Braverman, an ultra-conservative personality who had resigned a week ago, officially to have sent confidential documents from his personal email. According to the press, her resignation was rather due to disagreements on the migration policy, which she wishes to be very restrictive.

This is not a new start, it's the return of shenanigans, stormed the Scottish independence MP Ian Blackford, accusing the Prime Minister of wanting to strengthen his position by recruiting this figure from the right of the majority.

Mr. Sunak said Ms Braverman recognized her mistake and was delighted to welcome her to a unity government that brings stability to the heart of government.

The Labor opposition, by far in the lead in the polls, is calling for an early general election, without waiting for the end of 2024 or the beginning of 2025 as planned. A majority of Britons are in favor of it.

But Mr Sunak refuses an election that would surely be devastating for the conservative majority in power for 12 years. He is trying to put the pieces of a very divided party back together after months of scandals and political and economic turmoil.

He kept a number of ministers in place and recalled the barons of his party, obviously favoring, unlike Mrs Truss, unity and experience rather than loyalty.

Among the returning heavyweights, Michael Gove, Minister for Territorial Rebalancing, said it was time to return to a quietly functioning government. After 12 months of turbulence and extravagance, boredom is back, he quipped.

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