Letter: Wind of recession whips up debate

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Sir: You reported this morning that Howard Davies, director general of the Confederation of British Industry, said yesterday (at the London conference on the Independent's Manifesto for Economic Recovery) that the 'negative culture' perpetuated by the Treasury's public expenditure divisions flowed through all its activities, and that he said:

The case for separating the Treasury (functions) into a ministry for economic growth, and a public spending ministry is a sensible one.

I agree. George Brown got it wrong in 1964. What is needed is the best and brightest brains in the Home Civil Service, who will always wish to be in the department called the Treasury, being directed towards growth, while fiscal and public expenditure matters are taken elsewhere into a Ministry of the Budget. The malfunctioning of the present system is convincingly proven by the deteriorated state of our economy in relation to the leading economies of Europe compared with 1962.

Yours faithfully,


Chief Executive


London, SW1

9 December