Budget 2020 almost doubles borrowing by end of this parliament, says TaxPayers’ Alliance

For immediate release

Responding to today's budget, John O'Connell, chief executive of the TaxPayers' Alliance, said:
“The only thing this budget is getting done is net borrowing figures being spun.

“While there were some welcome wins on measures like the freezing of alcohol and fuel duties, this was basically a Gordon Brown-style budget of eye-watering bumper borrowing, a higher tax burden and billions in spending bungs.

“With the tax burden already at a 50 year high as a percentage of GDP, and the impact of coronavirus yet to be taken into account, the unfortunate truth is that it’s future taxpayers who will lose out from being expected to pay for the massive public sector net borrowing announced today.”

On borrowing being almost doubled by the end of this parliament, compared to last year’s OBR forecasts, O’Connell said:
"Compared to last year’s forecasts, the measures announced today mean that public sector net borrowing will have almost doubled in four years time. It’ll rise from around £33 billion to over £60 billion.

"Getting the country’s coffers back to a surplus - once the ambition of Conservative governments - has never seemed so far away."

Responding to measures announced to tackle coronavirus, O’Connell said:
"Coronavirus is a major national concern and it’s good to see the chancellor give small retailers a business rates lifeline, along with delaying payments for business taxes and temporary reforms to sick pay regulations.”

On the rise in the national insurance threshold to £9,500, O'Connell said:
"National insurance thresholds should match those for income tax, so it is good to see the point at which Britons have to start paying this effective second income tax increased."

On the freezes in fuel and alcohol duty, he said:
"These duty freezes are key for keeping down the cost of living, not least given 64 pence in every pound spent at the pump is already paid in tax. The chancellor is right to keep these freezes in place.

On the decision to move more civil service jobs out of London, O'Connell said:
“Rishi is right to heed our calls to move more central government jobs and offices out of London, not least given that more than 6 in 10 working class voters firmly agree.

“It’s a good move for taxpayers which will see costs come down and government become more accessible to people outside the Whitehall bubble.”

TPA spokesmen are available for live and pre-recorded broadcast interviews via 07795 084 113 (no texts)
Media contact:

Sam Packer
Media Campaign Manager, TaxPayers' Alliance
[email protected]
24-hour media hotline: 07795 084 113 (no texts)

  1. Founded in 2004 by Matthew Elliott and Andrew Allum, the TaxPayers’ Alliance (TPA) fights to reform taxes, reduce spending and protect taxpayers. Find out more about the TaxPayers' Alliance at www.taxpayersalliance.com.

  2. TaxPayers' Alliance's advisory council.

  3. In landmark polling released in November 2019, the TaxPayers’ Alliance found that there was widespread public support for tax cuts, and C2DE voters more than twice as likely as ABC1 voters to back cutting corporation tax to 12.5 per cent, the same level as Ireland’s. It also found 6 in 10 working class voters would be in favour of moving more civil service jobs away from London. The polling was conducted for the TaxPayers' Alliance by Public First Ltd. Total sample size was 4,004 with fieldwork between 26 - 30 July 2019.

  4. In December 2019, the TaxPayers' Alliance released research showing how the tax burden was set to be higher under whichever party that won the General Election than it had been under any other post-war prime minister.
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