The ‘real’ economy is actually doing quite well

Cllr Tony Janio, leader of the Conservatives on Brighton and Hove City Council SUS-180215-140221001
Cllr Tony Janio, leader of the Conservatives on Brighton and Hove City Council SUS-180215-140221001

Driving into Hove Town Hall the other day a stone hit my windscreen, causing me some fleeting distraction, and causing me for the briefest of moments to avert my gaze from the road ahead. 
I soon recovered with no damage done.

A similar experience hit me a few weeks ago following the Government’s Spring Statement.

The chaos in Westminster is but a stone on the windscreen of life across the millennia and, sometimes, just sometimes, we need to focus back to the real issue: the underlying condition of the real economy – which is actually rather good at the moment.

Whilst the diet we are fed daily means we are all certainly expecting the economy to turn bad, whatever your views on the EU and Corbyn, the two ‘themes’ defining politics at the moment, we are actually doing quite well. I know, who’d have thought it?

The United Kingdom has more people in work than ever, and households are continuing to spend, inequality is at a 30-year low and salaries are now rising at the fastest rate in ten years.

But I don’t hear this on the 10 o’clock news. The budget deficit is at its lowest level since 2003, yet politicians are running around as if caught by in a pinball machine.

If chaos in Westminster and the threat of a Corbyn Government has inhibited growth, then I wonder why our growth remains in line with other developed countries?

But the car industry is pulling out of the UK, I hear you say. Well, not really, the car industry is going through massive changes and a future that will surely be electric not diesel.

Just look at Germany heading for a slump. Business investment is recognisably subdued, hardly surprising with the political chaos all around. However, now we have a deal I believe the surge in investment, and the growth that follows, will be awe inspiring.

So what happens when a stone cracks the windscreen? My advice is to pull over, chill a bit, repair the damage and then get on with your journey. A journey of a 1,000 miles starts with the first turn of the key.

Cllr Tony Janio is the Leader of the Conservative Group on Brighton & Hove City Council