Newspaper headlines: 'Tories splash the cash' and £30bn 'war on virus'

By BBC News

  • Published
Rishi SunakImage source, Reuters
Image caption,
Rishi Sunak became chancellor last month, replacing Sajid Javid

Rishi Sunak's first Budget - and the measures he announced to help Britain cope with the coronavirus outbreak - dominate the front pages.

For the Daily Mail, it's "Dr Feelgood to the Rescue". The paper says Mr Sunak "gave the economy a £30bn vaccination" in an assured debut as chancellor.

The Daily Express says he delivered a "bold battle plan" for Britain's war against the virus.

"Sunak's road to riches" is the headline in the Times. The paper says the chancellor's £30bn spending spree marks the biggest giveaway since Norman Lamont's pre-election budget in 1992.

The Guardian agrees he's "splashing the cash" - but questions whether it will "hit the right targets".

The paper says criticism from the backbenches was led by the former prime minister, Theresa May, who sounded a warning about the long-term impact of loosening the purse strings.

The Spectator's Isabel Hardman says the £30bn package for dealing with coronavirus looks like "small change" when you consider the overall spend.

"It could easily have been a Labour budget", she writes - and all the noises from the chancellor are that he's keen to spend more.

The Daily Telegraph says Boris Johnson is about to announce that the coronavirus outbreak cannot be contained - and that Britain is moving to the next phase of its response.

The paper says the prime minister will outline a timetable of social distancing measures for the public after chairing a meeting of the government's emergency committee on Thursday.

Image source, Reuters
Image caption,
The US President announced a travel ban from the Oval Office at the White House

US President Donald Trump's European travel ban came too late for the UK newspapers. The New York Times website says Mr Trump finally appears to be acknowledging the severity of coronavirus.

His announcement, the paper says, "signalled a break from the business-as-usual attitude" he had been trying to project two days ago, when he said the virus would soon go away.

The Washington Post says the policy is another example of President Trump failing to work with other world leaders to fashion a common response - preferring to promote his border wall over the scientific advice of his own medical experts.

The Financial Times reports that stark growth forecasts from the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) have "laid bare" the economic cost of Brexit.

The official budget watchdog warned that leaving the European Union would hit growth, exports and the public finances at a time of rising uncertainty.

The paper says the OBR predicts a drop in GDP of more than 5% over the next 15 years, even if a trade deal is struck.

Image source, Getty Images

And the Daily Telegraph reports that storm clouds are gathering over the French wine industry - because of a growing thirst for craft beer.

Domestic sales of Bordeaux have fallen to their lowest level for 20 years. The number of microbreweries, by contrast, has shot up.

The Bordeaux Wine Council said it planned to launch a new advertising campaign, promoting the "hipsters, creatives and crazy people" who produce wine - in a bid to win back young drinkers.