November 19, 2017 / 10:18 AM / a year ago

UK at turning point after difficult year - Hammond

LONDON, Nov 19 (Reuters) - British finance minister Philip Hammond said on Sunday that the government was reaching a turning point after a difficult year and the country was close to the point of starting to bring down public debt.

“I do think we are at something of a turning point. We’ve had a difficult year,” Hammond told BBC television, saying Britain was now “on the brink of making some serious progress” in slow-moving Brexit talks, and inflation looked likely to fall after rising sharply.

“And after many years of struggling to get the (budget) deficit down and seeing our debt still rising I think we are at last about to turn that corner and see debt begin to fall,” he said.

Hammond has set himself a target of bringing down public debt as a share of gross domestic product.

Writing by William Schomberg; editing by William James

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