WORLD UK government debt exceeds £2 trillion for first time

WORLD

UK government debt exceeds £2 trillion for first time

AFP

14:57, August 21, 2020

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A pedestrian in a mask walk along Westminster Bridge with Elizabeth Tower (Big Ben) in the backgroud, in a quiet central London on March 25, 2020. (File photo: AFP)

British government debt has exceeded £2.0 trillion for the first time following large state borrowing as the coronavirus pandemic pushed the UK economy deep into recession, official data showed Friday.

At the end of July, total accumulated debt hit £2.004 trillion ($2.61 trillion, 2.2 trillion euros), the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said in a statement.

The debt increased by £227.6 billion compared with July 2019.

"This crisis has put the public finances under significant strain as we have seen a hit to our economy and taken action to support millions of jobs, businesses and livelihoods," finance minister Rishi Sunak said in a separate statement. 

"Without that support things would have been far worse."

UK borrowing last month alone was estimated at £26.7 billion, the ONS said.


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