What is the Autumn Statement?

Chancellor George Osborne delivered his Autumn Statement on Tuesday 29 November 2011.

He stood up in the House of Commons at 1230 GMT to update MPs on the government's plans based on the latest forecasts for the UK economy from the Office for Budget Responsibility.

The Office for Budget Responsibility report - published twice a year - is its assessment of the UK economy's likely performance over the next five years.

It reports on the state of the public finances and assesses whether the government is likely to achieve its goal of balancing the UK's budget within five years ('balancing the budget' is where spending matches the amount received from things like taxes).

Mr Osborne gave more details of things the government is planning to do - such as the already trailed plans to bring forward infrastructure spending - to try to boost the UK economy's growth rate.

Shadow chancellor Ed Balls replied for Labour, who say the government's plan to balance the budget mostly by sharp cuts in spending is not working. Mr Osborne then faced questions from MPs.

The Autumn Statement replaces what was called the pre-Budget report during the Labour government's time in office.

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