Post link 21 May 2015, 0:57
By TOM MCTAGUE, DEPUTY POLITICAL EDITOR FOR MAILONLINE
PUBLISHED: 19:30, 20 May 2015


It's the Great British sell off: Osborne reveals plan to sell off more government assets than ever before in bid to raise more than £23BILLION this year
. Government will raise more than £23billion with raft of sell-offs this year
. Chancellor vows to privatise Eurostar stake and the student loan book
. He will also push ahead with plan to sell off shares in bailed out Lloyds
. Mr Osborne reveals he had already ordered departments to find savings


George Osborne signalled the start of the biggest ever sell-off of public assets in a speech to the CBI business conference tonight.
The Chancellor said the government would raise more than £23billion this year – a new record – by privatising stakes in Eurostar, Lloyds and the student loan book.
He also revealed that Government departments have already been ordered to start finding extra savings ahead of the emergency budget in July, as he bids to wipe out the government deficit within just two years.

http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2015/05/20/21/28E95B5F00000578-3089837-image-a-79_1432152864635.jpg
Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne signalled the start of the biggest ever sell-off of public assets in a speech to the CBI business conference tonight (pictured at the meeting)

The Chancellor, making his first speech since the Tories were re-elected with a majority earlier this month, said getting Britain back in the black would be a major plank of his July 8 budget.

Mr Osborne will use the cash raised from the government sell offs to pay down the government's £1.5trillion debt.

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But he said making Britain more productive was the key for making families wealthier by driving up wages.
Mr Osborne said: 'Improving the productivity of our country is the route to raising standards of living for everyone in this country.'
He revealed that he would publish a 'Productivity Plan' before the budget to help 'make Britain work better', adding: 'Our future prosperity depends on it.'

http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2015/05/20/18/288FA6A400000578-0-image-m-86_1432143115782.jpg
The Chancellor said the government would raise more than £23billion this year – a new record – by privatising stakes in Eurostar (pictured), Lloyds and the student loan book

He said the level of skills in Britain was 'unacceptable' and far below Germany and the US.
'We're one of only three OECD countries where the skills of our 16-24 year olds are no better than our 55-65 year olds,' he said.
Taking the fight to Labour, which has opposed the Government's education reforms, Mr Osborne said: 'What an indictment of those vested interests who still oppose the changes we're making to raise standards in classrooms. '

But he said: 'We have a once in a generation opportunity, right now, to find an extra gear for the British economy, and ensure higher living standards for the next generation to come.'

As part of the speech, the Chancellor will announce the creation of a new government-owned company, UK Government Investments, to help speed up the sell-off of publicly-owned shares in banks and other institutions.

http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2015/05/20/21/28E9596900000578-3089837-image-a-80_1432152903312.jpg
George Osborne as he delivered his keynote address at a dinner held by the CBI tonight in London

These will include sale of shares in Lloyds Banking Group, UK Asset Resolution assets, Eurostar and the student loan book.
Mr Osborne said: 'If we want a more productive economy, let's get the government out of the business of owning great chunks of our banking system – and indeed other assets that should be in the private sector.

'To help that happen I can tell you that we're merging UK Financial Investments and the Shareholder Executive into one organisation, to return government investments back to the private sector.'

Mr Osborne claimed that Britain could become 'the most prosperous country in the world, and the best place to do business'.
He added: 'It would be very easy at the beginning of a second term to take our foot off the pedal. That's not what we're going to do.
'I want Britain to find that extra gear. So we deliver for working people. And with your help, that's exactly what I intend to do.'


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