Blair demands spending restraint

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TONY BLAIR will reassure big business leaders today that there will be no irresponsible pre-election public spending spree by the Government.

The Prime Minister's message of continued tough discipline on the economy will also be directed at the Bank of England's monetary policy committee, which is under pressure to raise interest rates tomorrow. Mr Blair will tell the Confederation of British Industry's conference in Birmingham that there will be no change to the tough new rules on spending and the priority given to delivering long term economic stability.

He will also unveil a new scheme to link colleges and libraries to the Internet at cheap rates, following complaints about high peak time rates.