I am delighted to report our most successful year ever. We made more progress to achieving our twin goals of increasing our losses and building up our levels of debt than ever before. Indeed, I am especially proud to be able to announce that in just two years we will be able to borrow more than all the previous managements of UK PLC and its predecessor companies over 1000 years. I think you will agree with me that this is a magnificent result.
As I can reveal in the formal papers attached to my announcement, the gross borrowing for the year just ended worked out at an impressive £181,600,000,000 – well above the £78,000,000,000 some mistakenly had been using as a forecast. Next year we can promise at least £237,000,000,000, an all time record which warms true hearts behind our strategy. We reveal this on page 246 of our famous Red book ( called this year Budget 2009), on the principle that we leave the best to the end.
That is £419,000,000,000 of gross borrowings in just two years. I trust people making their living out of selling government debt will be overjoyed at this big increase in what they have to do. If they will not buy it, then we will instruct the Bank of England and the nationalised banks to buy more. We have already asked them to buy substantial quantities to make the project feasible.
We could not have done it without the huge energy and commitment of our outstanding CEO. The whole Board have also played their part in finding so many ways to expand the workforce, dream up non jobs to advertise in the Guardian, hire consultants, send out glossy brochures, add red tape and complexity, put through over the top legislation, increase top public sector pay, pensions and expenses, and write uneconomic contracts. It has been a herculean labour to waste so much and spend so much in such a relatively short time. I would like to thank them all on your behalf.
I know some of you are concerned about the proposal to put prices up for the rich using our services. Might this not damage the build up of lossees and debt you ask? I can reassure you. This will only bring in 0.5% of the running deficit next year, and remains tiny thereafter. We have more than offset this increase in revenue by big increases in announced spending, so the deficit will go up, not down, compared to the previous forecast. It was however, a necessary decision to deal with our competitiors in the political marketplace. It will be warmly welcomed by our hard core of shareholder supporters who are worried that the company might face unwelcome management change despite all the success in implementing our agreed strategy.
What can I do for an encore, you might ask? Well you will be reassured to know that the apparent reductions in the deficit in future years is based upon optimstic forecasting of growth rates. Many think that these will not be achieved, so we can continue with the high borrowing path that has been our hallmark in recent years.
We do have to report the loss of one of our Shareholder relations specialists, Mr Mc Bride. I would like to confirm that his importance was exaggerated by some when he departed. It will be business as usual, as we have many more Shareholder Communications specialists who can help me with these letters and with our 7 x 24 briefing of the media. The house style of using company announcements to attack competitors will continue, as my Statement made clear yesterday.
Yours in debt
Click here to read John’s budget speech in the House of Commons yesterday.