The Chancellor set out that, although borrowing was lower than forecast this year and next, Britain still has a debt of nearly £1.7 trillion.
"The only sensible course of action, Mr Deputy Speaker, is to continue with our plan…we will not saddle our children with ever increasing debt," he told the Commons.
He was, however, buoyant about the performance of the economy.
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Mr Hammond said it continued to confound the commentators with robust growth and the Labour market showed record employment figures. Unemployment was at a 11 year low, with a higher proportion of women in the workforce than ever before.
This provides a “strong and stable platform” for negotiations with the EU as the Government works out a Brexit deal, Philip Hammond said.
He reported that Britain’s growth in 2016 was second only amongst the major advanced economies, to Germany, faster than the US, France and Japan.
But he stressed that there was “no room for complacency and you won’t find any on these benches”.
The UK can not rest on past achievements and also accepted that productivity remained “stubbornly low”.
He pledged that the Governemnt would
“build an economy that works for everyone”.
He said: "This Budget takes forward our plan to prepare Britain for a brighter future...a stronger, fairer, more global Britain."
OBR forecasts showed:
- upgraded forecast for growth this year from 1.6% to 2%
- In 2018 growth is forecast to slow to 1.6%, before picking up to 1.7% in 2019, 1.9% in 2020, and 2% in 2021.