The SNP has said Boris Johnson is “threatening the UK’s recovery from covid” by failing to deliver the investment needed for a strong, fair and equal recovery – as US President Joe Biden urged G7 countries to invest not withdraw support.
Data from Statista and the IMF shows that, as a proportion of GDP, the UK has the smallest stimulus package of any G7 country, despite suffering the worst economic slump – with UK GDP shrinking a record 9.9% in 2020, unemployment up at 4.9%, and 1.8million people still furloughed.
Earlier this week, US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen urged the UK and other countries to deliver a fiscal stimulus to speed up the recovery arguing “we continue to urge a shift in our thinking from ‘let’s not withdraw support too early’, to ‘what more can we do now’ – not just to end the pandemic, but to use fiscal policy to invest in addressing generational issues like climate change and inequality.”
Commenting, SNP Westminster Leader Ian Blackford MP said: “Boris Johnson is threatening the UK’s recovery from covid by imposing another round of Tory austerity cuts and failing to deliver the investment needed to protect the economy.
“It makes no sense that the UK has the smallest stimulus package of any G7 country despite suffering the worst economic slump.
“By cutting support and withholding investment, the Tories are putting the jobs, incomes and livelihoods of millions of people on the line.
“Tory plans to slash Universal Credit by £1040 a year, impose a public sector pay freeze, and end furlough prematurely will act as a roadblock to recovery and leave millions of people struggling to get by – entrenching poverty and inequality across the UK.
“The SNP has consistently argued for a major fiscal stimulus package to deliver an investment-led recovery.
“It’s vital that the UK government now brings forward an emergency summer budget to turbo charge investment – instead of risking the recovery.”