UK government sets date for first post-Brexit budget

Monday October 14 2019

Finance Minister Sajid Javid announced on

Finance Minister Sajid Javid announced on Monday announced that there will be a budget on 6 November. AP PHOTO 

By AFP

Britain's government is planning a first post-Brexit budget for November 6, one week after it expects the country to have left the European Union, finance minister Sajid Javid announced on Monday.

"This will be the first budget after leaving the EU," Chancellor of the Exchequer Javid said in a statement.

"I will be setting out our plan to shape the economy for the future and triggering the start of our infrastructure revolution. This is the right and responsible thing to do -- we must get on with governing," he added.

Britain and the EU are currently locked in last-ditch talks to secure a divorce deal ahead of a crunch two-day summit for European leaders in Brussels starting Thursday.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson insists that Britain will leave the bloc on October 31 as scheduled, even without an agreement.

But British MPs last month passed a law requiring him to request a Brexit extension if no deal has been finalised by the end of the summit.

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It remains unclear how Johnson intends to proceed in such a situation.

Meanwhile the budget, Javid's first as chancellor, was expected to build on proposals he set out last month for infrastructure, including hospitals and railways.

However Jon Trickett, the Labour Party's Cabinet Office spokesman, was sceptical the budget would be delivered as planned, with opposition parties threatening to topple Johnson's government and the prime minister himself pushing for a snap election.

"I would be surprised if there is a budget at that time because they've no idea whether they're going to get this Brexit proposal through the House (of Commons) or not," he told BBC Radio.

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