Brooks Newmark comments on AAA credit rating

25th February 2013

Commenting in response to the loss of the triple A credit rating, Brooks Newmark highlights the fact that the only two countries that have maintained their triple A credit rating across the board—Canada and Germany—are the two countries that entered the financial crisis with the lowest structural deficits of the G7, that is “the two countries that fixed the roof while the sun was shining”.

Mr Brooks Newmark (Braintree) (Con): Does the Chancellor agree that the only two countries that have maintained their triple A credit rating across the board—Canada and Germany—are the two countries that fixed the roof while the sun was shining?

Mr Osborne: My hon. Friend is absolutely right. Germany and Canada went into the financial crisis with the two lowest structural deficits of the G7, and the United Kingdom went into the financial crisis with the highest structural deficit in the G7—5%. That was confirmed recently by the International Monetary Fund. I think that, quite extraordinarily, the only person in Britain who still denies that we had a structural deficit is the shadow Chancellor. The former Chancellor accepts it and the former Prime Minister, Tony Blair, accepts it; only the shadow Chancellor does not accept it. He cannot accept it because that would mean admitting he got it wrong, and if he admitted he got it wrong, people would not put him in charge again.

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