According to the IMF calculations, Britain is spending 1.5 per cent of gross domestic product on emergency measures this year, largely constituting the temporary VAT cut. This compares to 2 per cent in the US, 4.1 per cent in Russia and 2.7 per cent in Japan. The average stimulus within the G20 next year is 1.6 per cent, compared with Britain's zero per cent contribution.
The IMF has already warned the Government that its plans to cut public debt do not go far enough. In its most recent assessment of the UK economy, the IMF said the Chancellor must start paying back debt significantly earlier than projected in April's Budget. The organisation favours sharper spending cuts and bringing the Budget back into balance over an electoral term.
The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development has also made grim predictions about the state of Britain's public finances. It is forecasting the fiscal deficit next year will climb to 14 per cent of GDP, higher than Ireland or Iceland, and the worst in the industrialised world.