Grant Shapps

The government’s budget may be delayed, a cabinet minister has said.

It had been set for 11 March, but the timetable was thrown into doubt after the surprise resignation of former Chancellor Sajid Javid on Thursday.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said the date would be a matter for Mr Javid’s replacement, Rishi Sunak.

He told the BBC’s Andrew Marr programme: “The guy’s only been in place for a few days, let’s give him a few days to decide on the date.”

Mr Shapps said the government had not confirmed the budget would “definitely go ahead on the same date as mentioned before”, but added: “Clearly, we’ll need to have a budget.”

Earlier, he told Sky’s Sophy Ridge programme that plans were “well advanced”, but Mr Sunak “may want time” and would be looking at the plans this week.

The budget is the government’s annual announcement on its plans for tax and spending for the coming financial year.

Mr Javid had been due to present his plans to Parliament in November, but cancelled it to make way for a general election.

He confirmed the new date in January, promising an “infrastructure revolution”, with billions of pounds invested “across the country”.

Further delays could stop the Office for Budget Responsibility – which monitors the government’s performance on money management – from complying with its legal requirement of publishing two forecasts in the financial year.


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