Chancellor confirms three-year Spending Review imminent subject to a Brexit deal

Chancellor Philip Hammond addressing Parliament during his Spring Statement

In documents released alongside Chancellor Philip Hammond's Spring Statement, the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) said growth in the United Kingdom and global economies had slowed since October's Budget, leading to a downgrade in its short-term forecasts.

In his Spring Statement, Philip Hammond said the Spending Review will set departmental budgets beyond the NHS and maximise taxpayer's money.

But this depends on a Brexit deal being completed in the next few weeks and the "uncertainty that is hanging over our economy lifted".

Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond (picture) issued a fresh warning that leaving the European Union (EU) without a deal would damage the United Kingdom economy and leave people less well off.

He added though that the "economy itself is remarkably robust".

"I hoped we would do that last night, but I am confident that we, as a House, will do it over the coming weeks".

The OBR forecast growth of 1.2% this year, 1.4% next year and 1.6% in the following three years.

But the OBR also warned that a disorderly no-deal would pose a risk to the predicted growth rates, as the numbers are based on an assumed scenario in which the United Kingdom leaves the European Union with a deal on March 29, and enters a transition period.

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British Prime Minister Theresa May stressed on Tuesday that parliament's approval of the withdrawal agreement she has reached with Brussels will deliver a fiscal "Brexit dividend".

The country's official budget forecasters expected gross domestic product would grow by 1.2 percent in 2019, down from a forecast of 1.6 percent they made when Hammond gave his full budget statement in October.

"This is up from £15.4 billion in October, as the fiscal costs of the temporary near-term cyclical weakness of the economy have been swamped by the fiscal gains from higher income tax and lower debt interest spending". "That is not what the British people voted for in June 2016", he said.

Analysts expect parliament instead to favor delaying Britain's departure beyond the March 29 exit date, in a further vote due Thursday.

IFS director Paul Johnson noted that Brexit and its unknown outcome had seen Hammond hold back on significant spending announcements based on better-than-expected tax revenue.

Hammond said he announced in the Autumn Budget that the "long but necessary squeeze on current public spending would come to and end at the upcoming Spending Review".

Earlier yesterday, the government unveiled plans for temporary tariffs if the United Kingdom crashes out without a deal.

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