RISHI Sunak will lay out his spending plans for the next year on November 25, he confirmed today.
The Chancellor will set out a one-year spending review rather than a three-year one, as a result of the unpredictable nature of the coronavirus pandemic.
It means Boris Johnson will have put his plan for a post-Covid vision for the UK on hold.
In his speech to the Conservative Party Conference last month, the PM vowed to see off the “alien invader” of coronavirus and “build Britain back better” with mass spending on infrastructure projects around the country.
He laid out plans for a green energy revolution, to help young people get on the housing ladder and fix ailing social care system during his time in No10.
But the Comprehensive Spending Review – which is usually a multi-year spending plan where the Chancellor doles out budgets for each Whitehall department has been cut down to just one year.
The only projects which will get longer budgets will be multi-year NHS and schools’ resource settlements, as well as priority infrastructure programmes.
One of the notable exceptions to the one year spending allocation is building new hospitals, after Mr Johnson vowed to build 40 new hospitals.
Mr Sunak stressed the bigger budgets were only being delayed – and not ripped up.
He said: “In the current environment it’s essential that we provide certainty.
“So we’ll be doing that for departments and all of the nations of the United Kingdom by setting budgets for next year, with a total focus on tackling Covid and delivering our Plan for Jobs.
He added: “Long term investment in our country’s future is the right thing to do, especially in areas which are the cornerstone of our society like the NHS, schools and infrastructure.”
“We’ll make sure these areas crucial to our economic recovery have their budgets set for further years so they can plan and help us Build Back Better.”
There are expected to be exceptions for health and defence and potentially defence spending amid warnings from military chiefs that delaying spending plans will hamper efforts to plan for a new era of changing threats.