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George Osborne will appoint next OBR leader

Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne has today defended his decision to retain the right to appoint the head of the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) with controversy still growing as to the real "independence" of the office. There have been accusations of figures being massaged to cast the UK government in a better light and while these accusations have been denied by George Osborne and David Cameron the announcement that Alan Budd will be stepping down has done nothing to dampen the controversy.

It will be interesting to see how the UK government tackles this issue and how quickly it is able to enshrine the OBR in law via Parliament. As we have mentioned in some of our earlier articles, there is also concern that no economist with a decent reputation would agree to take over as head of the OBR so long as rumours of political interference continue to swirl around. This office was supposed to be George Osborne's shadow to check and report upon the underlying UK economy and the potential impact that any government policy changes may have. There is no doubt that the government now has a very difficult job to regain the reputation which followed after the appointment of Alan Budd to the OBR.

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