New UK finance minister Kwarteng seeks end to “cycle of stagnation”

Kwasi Kwarteng arrives at Number 10 Downing Street, in London, Britain September 6, 2022. REUTERS/Phil Noble/File Photo

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  • Kwarteng to make fiscal statement to UK parliament at 0830 GMT
  • Tax cuts, planning reforms and energy subsidies head the agenda
  • Measures could cost close to 200 billion pounds, economists say
  • Sterling weakest vs dollar since 1985, borrowing costs soaring

LONDON, Sept 22 (Reuters) – New British finance minister Kwasi Kwarteng will detail close to 200 billion pounds ($225 billion) of tax cuts, energy subsidies and planning reforms on Friday, as part of Prime Minister Liz Truss’s bid to end “Treasury orthodoxy” and spur growth.

Truss beat former finance minister Rishi Sunak to the leadership of the Conservative Party – and with it, the job of prime minister – in large part by campaigning against tax rises which Sunak announced in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

After a delay caused by the death of Queen Elizabeth – which came just hours after Truss set out a costly programme of subsidies to tackle soaring energy costs – Kwarteng will present parliament with the new government’s programme around 9.30 a.m./ 0830 GMT.

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Financial markets will also receive an initial price tag for the proposals, as the United Kingdom Debt Management Office will publish new borrowing plans after Kwarteng finishes his speech.

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