'I Don't Care About The German Rate Of Inflation' – Naga Munchetty Slaps Down Minister

Liz Truss and Kwasi Kwarteng are set to meet with the head of the Office of Budget Responsibility in a bid to reassure markets.
Naga Munchetty and Andrew Griffith
Naga Munchetty and Andrew Griffith
BBC Breakfast

Naga Munchetty slapped down a minister today, telling him: “I don’t care about the German rate of inflation.”

The BBC Breakfast presenter was quizzing the new city minister Andrew Griffith on the recent economic turmoil.

It comes as Liz Truss and Kwasi Kwarteng are set to meet with the head of the Office of Budget Responsibility in a bid to reassure markets.

The government has come under fire for preventing the OBR from making a forecast, usually produce alongside a fiscal event, on last week’s mini-budget.

Griffith suggested the “detail” of the growth plan made it impossible for an independent watchdog to assess it before the government published it.

Munchetty told Griffith: “When it comes to confidence, surely you’ve seen what’s been happening in the markets, the Bank of England has had to intervene because of the exacerbating effects of this fiscal event.

“Surely the sooner something is published regarding that fiscal event, that’s when the confidence will be lifted wouldn’t it?”

Griffith said it was the right thing to publish but that things might change with a working draft and added: “Things are moving, we’re dealing with incredible challenges that are happening across the developed world.

“It all dates back to February 24 when Putin made his unwarranted aggression in Ukraine that’s had huge impacts on the energy market.

“This country has done a good job about coming forward and diversifying its energy supplies but there’s more to do, we’re not we’re not there yet...”

Munchetty cut across him, saying: “And that has fed into inflation, obviously, and prices in August, as you are well aware of course Andrew Griffith, 9.9 per cent higher than they were 12 months ago.

“So rate of inflation roughly 10 per cent. Can I talk to you...”

Griffith interrupted: “Yesterday the German rate of inflation was 11...”

But Munchetty hit back: “To be genuinely honest, I don’t care about the German rate of inflation.

“I’m talking about the UK rate of inflation and how it affects us.”

Former chancellor George Osborne called it a “welcome move” after it emerged that Truss and Kwarteng will meet with the OBR.

He tweeted: “In the space of one week we’ve gone from the OBR being dismissed to the PM turning up to its meetings.

“Turns out the credibility of the institution we created 12 years ago to bring honesty to the public finances is more enduring than that of its critics.”

Kwarteng’s tax-cutting announcement last Friday spooked markets and sent the pound crashing. Mortgage lenders followed suit, suspending new deals amid fears over rapidly rising rates.

The International Monetary Fund [IMF] launched a stinging attack on the UK’s tax-cutting plans and called on Truss to reconsider them to prevent stoking inequality.

And on Wednesday, the Bank of England announced an emergency intervention in response to a “run dynamic” on the pensions system which could have resulted in the collapse of a swathe of institutions within hours.


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