Government borrowing in December almost hits £17bn

The UK government borrowed almost £17 billion in December, making it the fourth highest December total on record.

After the sharp rise in inflation, debt interest payments increased to a six-month high.

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“We are supporting the British people as we recover from the pandemic through our plan for jobs and business grants, loans and tax reliefs,” said Rishi Sunak.

“Risks to the public finances, including from inflation, make it even more important that we avoid burdening future generations with high debt repayments.”

“Our fiscal rules mean we will reduce our debt burden while continuing to invest in the future of the UK.”

Bethany Beckett, UK economist at Capital Economics, commented: “As it stands, cumulative borrowing in 2021-22 is still on track to hit the OBR’s forecast of £183 billion.

“But we doubt that this will last: we expect RPI inflation to average 2.8 percentage points higher than the OBR’s forecast in 2022-23, which will push up total borrowing in 2022-23 to £105 billion, well above the OBR’s forecast of £83 billion.”

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