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Page last updated at 09:06 GMT, Thursday, 24 March 2011

Osborne: A Budget 'to create stability'

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The chancellor has said that measures like those outlined in yesterday's Budget, aim to "create the stability and now give the entrepreneurial boost to get us into the prosperity we all want to see".

Interviewed by Today presenter James Naughtie, Mr Osborne said that people should not just judge the Budget by the newspaper headlines, "judge it by the reaction of business organisations," adding that it "has got companies moving to the UK, like WPP, rather than leaving the UK".

While acknowledging that forecasts for growth were "still not spectacular" he insisted that "seeing where we're coming from, it's sustained and steady".

Mr Osborne said that the coalition has "used our political capital... to do tough but necessary things to put our country and economy on the right track".

And he added that the government would meet the costs of the UK's current operations in Libya from the reserve, adding "the money is there to help with this".

Speaking earlier on the programme, shadow chancellor Ed Balls said the government was clinging to an economic strategy that was not working, with the new Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) warning that growth was being squeezed.

"The OBR said yesterday that nothing in the growth plan would make any difference to the growth of the economy. They actually forecast unemployment and borrowing to be higher over the next few years."

"George Osborne is in a blinkered way carrying on regardless of what people know is the reality. The reality is that it is not working."


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