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Brexit: Barnier says UK should be able to agree ‘ground rules’ with EU on trade given PM’s standards pledge – live news | Politics

The prime minister has won a huge mandate to transform our country and already he is off to a great start – ending the parliamentary paralysis, defeating the radical left, getting Brexit done, a points-based immigration system and an infrastructure revolution.

We need a resolute focus on long-term outcomes and delivery, not short-term headlines. The Treasury as an institution, as an economic ministry should be the engine that drives this new agenda.

But the Treasury must also be allowed to play its role as a finance ministry with the strength and credibility that it requires.

You see, I’m a proud, low-tax Conservative and I always will be. Already our tax burden is the highest it has been in 50 years.

It is fair to say not everyone at the centre of government always feels the pressure to balance the books. It was ever thus.

But the Treasury has a job to do. It is the only tax-cutting ministry. Every other department has an in-built incentive to seek and to spend ever more money …

At a time when we need to do much to level up across generations it would not be right to pass the bill for our day-to-day consumption to our children and grandchildren.

And unlike the US, we don’t have the fiscal flexibility that comes with a reserve currency, so that’s why the fiscal rules that we are elected on are critical.

To govern is to choose, and these rules crystallise the choices that are required to keep spending under control, to keep taxes low, to root out waste and to pass that fitness test that was rightfully set in stone in our manifesto on debt being lower at the end of the parliament.

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