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Rishi Sunak has warned the latest statistics from the Office of Budget Responsibility (OBR) have made a “somber reading” as it highlighted the severe impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the economy. The Chancellor said the economy is expected to contract by over 11 percent in 2021 as the UK will likely struggle with the aftermath of the crisis for years. Mr Sunak said: “Even with growth returning, our economic output is not expected to return to normal until 4th quarter of 2022.”
Mr Sunak has also warned growth levels will not be returning to their pre-crisis highs until 2025 at the earliest.
OBR figures have also shown unemployment could hit 7.5 percent, meaning 2.6 million Britons could face redundancy next year.
A spokesman for Number 10 said: “Cabinet was told the OBR forecasts will show the impact the coronavirus pandemic has had on our economy and they will make for a sobering read, showing the extent to which the economy has contracted and the scale of borrowing and debt levels.
“But, as the IMF, OBR and others have pointed out, the costs would have been much higher had we not acted in the way we have done.”
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