Rachel Reeves warns nation’s funds are in worst place since Second World War

Rachel Reeves will publish a dossier exposing the “dire” state of nation’s finances within weeks, she has announced.

The Chancellor said that in the first 72 hours in the job she had seen the true scale of the problem. She has ordered Treasury officials to produce a detailed assessment of the government’s inheritance.

Ms Reeves has promised to “get Britain building” as she announced an end to the “absurd” ban on onshore wind farms and a major overhaul of planning rules. “There is no time to waste,” she declared, adding: “I mean business.”

Asked about Liz Truss’s claim there was an anti-growth coalition holding the country back, Ms Reeves said: “The anti-growth coalition is the Conservative Party and the British people kicked them out of office last week.”

In her first speech today, Ms Reeves said: “I have repeatedly warned that whoever won the General Election would inherit the worst set of circumstances since the Second World War. What I have seen in the past 72 hours has only confirmed that our economy has been held back by decisions deferred and decisions ducked, political self-interest put ahead of the national interest. A government that put party first and country second.

“We face the legacy of 14 years of chaos and economic irresponsibility. That is why, over the weekend, I instructed Treasury officials to provide an assessment of the state of our spending inheritance so that I can understand the full scale of the challenge. And I will present this to Parliament before the summer recess.

“This will be separate from a budget that will be held later this year, and I will confirm the date of that Budget, alongside the full cost from the office for Budget Responsibility in due course.

“All governments face difficult decisions. I will not shrink from those choices. Those choices are made harder, however, by the absence of the economic growth necessary once only to balance the books, but also to improve living standards.”