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Mark Carney Mocks George Bush's Iraq War 'Mission Accomplished' Banner

28/08/2013 16:40 BST | Updated 29/08/2013 09:16 BST
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NOTTINGHAM, UNITED KINGDOM - AUGUST 28: Mark Carney, governor of the Bank of England, delivers his address to business leaders on August 28, 2013 in Nottingham, England. Carney's first policy speech as Bank of England governor is his chance to address investor doubts that he can keep interest rates on hold at a record low until at least late 2016. During his speech, Carney said officials are ready to add stimulus if investor expectations for higher interest rates rise too far and undermine the recovery. (Photo by Nigel Roddis - Pool/Getty Images)

Mark Carney believes the Bank of England has done what it can to help banks lend to small businesses, even throwing in an infamous gaffe from ex-US President George Bush to make his point.

Asked how the Bank of England would help banks lend to small and medium sized firms, Carney told journalists: "There is no mission accomplished banner saying the banking system's fixed but we've pushed the system to be adequately capitalised, and that's important and that will start to filter through."

In 2003, then President George Bush made a televised address aboard an aircraft carrier announcing an end to major combat operations in Iraq in front of a "Mission Accomplished" banner, which ended up looking triumphalist as military and civilian casualities later soared.

george bush aircraft carrier

George W. Bush speaks on the USS Abraham Lincoln in 2003 in front of a 'Mission Accomplished' banner

Speaking in Nottingham, the governor of the Bank of England said: "We shouldn't try to judge the success of the banking system by aggregate credit figures. There is still a healthly level of that. The bigger issue is the reallocation of that credit over time - it's the SMEs that need access to that credit.

"SME funding is often secured against some sort of property asset and the recovery in those values, and that does make a difference to the risk appetite of banks and therefore the ability to fund."

Mr Carney used his appearance at the CBI event to reassure business leaders about his "forward guidance" plans, which he unveiled earlier this month.

"Rates won't go up until jobs and incomes are really growing," he said.

"The knowledge that interest rates will stay low until the recovery is well established should give greater confidence to households to spend responsibly and businesses to invest wisely."