Angela Eagle MP, Labour's Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury, commenting on the ONS GDP second quarter figures published today, said:
“These figures confirm that last year’s recovery has been choked off by George Osborne’s VAT rise and spending review. The economy has effectively flatlined for nine months.
“The Managing Director of the IMF, Christine Lagarde, was right to warn that ‘slamming on the brakes too quickly will hurt the recovery and worsen job prospects'. Lower growth and fewer people in work paying taxes will make it harder to get the deficit down.
“But all we see from George Osborne is more complacency. Far from being a safe haven, whilst the Euro zone has grown 1.3 per cent, the UK economy has all but flat-lined since the autumn.
“George Osborne’s reckless and incautious decision to cut too far and too fast has undermined our recovery well before the recent problems in the Eurozone and America and leaving us dangerously exposed if things now go wrong there.
“We need an emergency temporary VAT cut to get the recovery back on track and ease the squeeze on families, and Labour has called for a bank bonus tax to fund 100,000 jobs for young people and more investment in regional growth.”