Liz Truss claims ‘recession is not inevitable’ despite gloomy economic forecast
iz Truss has insisted that a recession is “not inevitable” despite the Bank of England predicting Britain will fall into a deep downturn lasting more than a year.
Speaking in a televised debate before Conservative Party members on Sky News, Ms Truss said her plan of swift tax cuts was needed.
Allies of Rishi Sunak, her rival in the race to become the next prime minister, have argued that Ms Truss’s “dangerous” approach would risk further stoking inflation.
The Bank of England predicted Thursday the economy will plunge into the longest recession since the financial crisis in 2008 and that inflation will peak at more than 13 percent this year.
Interest rates were also raised to the highest level in nearly three decades, from 1.25% to 1.75%, hiking the cost of mortgage repayments.
Under questioning Ms Truss said: “What the Bank of England have said today is of course extremely worrying, but it is not inevitable.
“We can change the outcome and we can make it more likely that the economy grows.”
She added: “Now is the time to be bold, because if we don’t act now, we are headed for very, very difficult times.”
Ms Truss insisted that “trying to balance the books prematurely is actually counterproductive”.
She said: “It is important over the long term to make sure that the private sector is growing faster than the public sector and we are able to generate the revenues for our economy and also be able to pay for our public services.”
The Foreign Secretary refused to answer questions on whether she would strip Boris Johnson of the Conservative Party whip if she becomes prime minister in the event he is found to have misled parliament.
“I’m not making any prejudgments about that, but by the way I’m very clear he didn’t mislead Parliament,” she said.
Rishi Sunak insisted that he would not withdraw from the contest despite polling suggesting Ms Truss has a commanding lead.
He said that Liz Truss’ plans would make the dire economic situation worse, warning of “misery for millions” by pouring “fuel on the fire”.
The former Chancellor told the Sky News debate: “We in the Conservative party need to get real and fast because the lights on the economy are flashing red and the root cause is inflation.
“I’m worried that Liz Truss’s plans will make the situation worse.”
He said that he had a plan to grow the economy but it “starts with not making the situation worse”.
Although polling suggests Ms Truss is the clear frontrunner in the race, Mr Sunak received some comfort by receiving the backing of a majority of the audience at the Sky News debate in a show of hands.