Interest rates: Tories piling failure upon failure

It is normal people and families paying the price for Tory incompetence.

One year on from Kwasi Kwarteng’s disastrous budget and the Tories are still piling failure upon failure, says the Scottish Greens economy spokesperson, Maggie Chapman MSP.

Ms Chapman was responding to the news that interest rates remain at a 15 year high of 5.25%.

There are an estimated 115,000 Scottish households who are on standard variable rate mortgages and 85,000 on tracker loans. These fluctuate with the base rate set by the Bank of England. On top of that, there are a further 120,000 households in Scotland with fixed rate mortgages due to expire this year. They can expect their mortgage repayments to be impacted in the coming months.

Ms Chapman said:

“The Tories may try to paint this as some kind of victory, but that shows how low expectations are. We are a year on from Liz Truss and Kwasi Kwarteng’s disastrous mini Budget, and the Tories are still piling failure upon failure. 

“These remain the highest interest rates for 15 years and it is normal people and families who are feeling the pain and paying the price. Today’s announcement will be cold comfort to them and will do little to ease the pressure and anxiety that so many are facing. 

“People across the country are struggling to pay their rent or mortgages. Far too many workers have been left with no option but to go on strike for decent pay rises in line with inflation.

“Far too many folk are still struggling to put food on the table. As we look ahead to a winter of soaring energy bills the future seems very very bleak under this disastrous Tory government.

“None of this was inevitable. We can have an economy that works for people and planet and a recovery that focuses on wellbeing and reducing poverty. 

“That is why Scottish Greens are doing what we can, with the limited powers we have in Scotland, to do things differently and to turn the page on years of Tory failure.

“We have increased the groundbreaking Scottish Child Payment to £25 a week for every eligible child, providing vital support for vulnerable families. We have implemented the biggest expansion of the living wage since devolution. We have introduced free bus travel for everyone under 22 and are about to scrap peak rail fares. All of this has been funded by the most progressive tax system anywhere in the UK.

“There is lots more to do, but we have no chance of reaching our potential as long as the biggest decisions lie with a Tory government that Scotland did not vote for and has rejected time and again.”