COMMONS

Office for Budget Responsibility questioned on Spending Round 2019

06 September 2019

The Treasury Committee takes evidence from the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) on Spending Round 2019.

Witnesses

Monday 9 September 2019, at 4.15pm

  • Robert Chote, Chair, Office for Budget Responsibility
  • Professor Sir Charlie Bean, Member, Budget Responsibility Committee
  • Andy King, Member, Budget Responsibility Committee

Session background

The OBR was not asked by the Government to produce an economic and fiscal outlook for this fiscal event. Instead, Rt Hon. Sajid Javid MP, Chancellor of the Exchequer, used the OBR’s March forecast as the basis for his claim that he was sticking to the fiscal rules for Spending Round 2019. The Committee plans to ask the OBR on whether this was appropriate.

The Chancellor was also invited to give evidence to the Treasury Committee on Spending Round 2019, but neither he nor any other Treasury Minister are able to attend.

Chair's comment

Commenting on the announcement, John Mann MP, Interim Chair of the Treasury Committee, said:

"Government spending plans must be properly scrutinised. This is one of the vital functions of the Treasury Committee. It is an unacceptable precedent that not a single Treasury Minister has been permitted to provide evidence to the Treasury Committee before the House is prorogued.

While the Chancellor has agreed to provide evidence later in the Autumn, the Government should have had the foresight and courtesy to permit the Treasury Committee to question the Chancellor sooner rather than later on its latest spending plans."

Further information

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