Economists back Robert Chote's warning on growth


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Indy Politics

Economists yesterday backed the warning from the head of the Office for Budget Responsibility that the Chancellor, George Osborne, was likely to miss his growth targets.

Robert Chote told The Independent that there "aren't many people" expecting annual growth to reach the 1.7 per cent anticipated in March.

He was echoed by Philip Rush, an economist at Nomura, and by the forecasting firm IHS Global Insight.

Seizing on the comments, the shadow Treasury minister, David Hanson, said: "George Osborne must now recognise that his tax rises and spending cuts, which go too far and too fast, have choked off last year's recovery. He has left us in a weak position if things now go wrong in the eurozone and America."

But a Treasury spokesman said: "This is a time of uncertainty in the international economy, but Britain has been stable during this time and the economy is growing and creating jobs.

"Reducing the deficit and tackling our debts is an essential prerequisite for sustained growth."