UK to borrow more than expected, debt to rise longer - Osborne
LONDON, March 20
LONDON, March 20 (Reuters) - Britain will borrow more in the coming years than official forecasts showed in December and will miss one of its two debt targets by another year, finance minister George Osborne said on Wednesday.
Public sector net debt, excluding the transfer of Royal Mail pension assets, will amount to 7.4 percent of GDP in 2012-13, 6.8 percent in 2013-14 and 5.9 percent in 2014-15, according to the latest forecasts by the independent Office for Budget Responsibility cited by Osborne.
In December, the OBR predicted that the deficit would stand at 6.9 percent of GDP in 2012-13, 6.1 percent of GDP in 2013-14 and 5.2 percent of GDP in 2014-15.
Osborne said the government was on course to meet its target of having a surplus on its cyclically adjusted current budget one year early.
However, he said the chances of meeting his supplementary target of achieving a fall in net public sector debt as a share of GDP had deteriorated and the goal would now be met in 2017-18.
In December the OBR already predicted that Britain's debt would continue rising as a share of its GDP until the 2016-17 tax year - a year longer than originally targeted by Osborne.
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