Autumn Statement

The Chancellor, George Osborne, is expected to deliver his autumn statement this lunchtime. Ahead of the announcement speculation is rife that he plans to cut welfare spending and also pospone the 3p rise in fuel duty until the next budget.

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Chancellor's 'humiliating climb-down' - Plaid

Plaid Cymru's Treasury spokesman, Jonathan Edwards, says the Autumn Statement represents an admission that the Chancellor's 'austerity experiment' has failed. He said:

This Autumn Statement is a humiliating climb-down for a Chancellor in denial who is now being forced to admit the failure of his austerity experiment.

Missed debt and deficit targets coupled with the OBR’s downgrading of forecasts have exposed the Chancellor’s lack of a long-term strategy for growth and he is now presented with a golden opportunity to reverse the downward spiral which is rapidly leading to increased and institutionalised poverty and unemployment.

Mr Edwards went on to criticise as 'self-defeating' the decision to fund extra money for capital projects by cutting the budgets of nearly every Whitehall department.

The announcement on capital investment is also to be welcomed, but for this to be funded via extra austerity will be self-defeating. We also have grave concerns over the introduction of regional pay for teachers – a deeply damaging policy that The Party of Wales warned against in our 2011 manifesto.**

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