Explained: What is a government spending round?

Lisa Smith, BA (Hons), CeFA

Chancellor of the Exchequer Sajid Javid addressed the country with his plans for government spending in Spending Round 2019 with a promise to ‘turn the page’ on austerity.

The spending round sets out how much money government departments have for 2020 – 2021.

Government spending in Britain includes services that impact everyone in the country health, education, policing and defence. The spending includes day-to-day bills like schools, running costs of hospitals and paying public sector workers.

Spending will increase by 4.1% on top of inflation – which means departments will not have to cut their budgets for the first time since 2002 and will have £13.8 billion more in the bank.

Schools are a major recipient of extra cash. Secondary schools will pick up an extra £5,000 a pupil, while primary heads get £4,000 a pupil. Teachers will reportedly gain a starting salary of £30,000 a year.

Billions for the NHS

The NHS will receive an extra £33.9 billion a year by 2023 – 2024 compared to 2018 – 2019.

Nurses also win a £1,000 personal development budget to spend over three years.

Social care secures £1.5 billion which will be handed to local councils to meet rising demand.

A crackdown on crime will see the recruitment of more than 20,000 new police officers and 10,000 new prison places for offenders.

£2.2 billion will go on defence, improving equipment and technology to meet threats against national security.

Extra money also goes on improving bus and train services (£490 million), funding better biodiversity and clean air (£250 million) and £2 billion to fund negotiations with the European Union after Brexit.

Sensible economic policy

“If we leave with No Deal – we will be ready. Within my first few days as Chancellor, I provided £2.1 billion of extra funding for Brexit and No Deal preparedness,” said the Chancellor.

“And today I can announce that we provide a further £2 billion for Brexit delivery next year as well.

“That means more Border Force staff, it means better transport infrastructure at our ports, and more support for business readiness.

“Sensible economic policy means we should plan for both outcomes.

“But we should be careful not to let our focus on planning and preparedness distract us from the opportunities that lie ahead.

“Brexit will allow us to reshape the British economy and reaffirm our place as a world-leading economic power.”

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