Clarke weighs into interest rate policy

Former Chancellor Kenneth Clarke made a scathing attack on Labour’s economic policy this week, describing the level of interest rates as ‘a disgrace’. Speaking at the British Chambers of Commerce’s national conference, he slammed the Government for letting manufacturing take the brunt of the high pound and interest rates. ‘It is a great pity that […]

Former Chancellor Kenneth Clarke made a scathing attack on Labour’s economic policy this week, describing the level of interest rates as ‘a disgrace’.

Speaking at the British Chambers of Commerce’s national conference, he slammed the Government for letting manufacturing take the brunt of the high pound and interest rates.

‘It is a great pity that the Bank of England and the Treasury seem to believe that a recession in manufacturing is somehow necessary. We will see continuing difficult conditions for the manufacturing sector in particular at the end of the year,’ he said.

Clarke warned that the fallout from the Asian economic crisis had yet to hit the UK in earnest.

Manufacturing industry delegates in a minority at the conference reiterated concern that the Government seemed unable to act quickly to alleviate the effects of the high pound.

* In an electronic poll of the 500 delegates, over 75% said the UK should join the euro within the next five years.