Defence, diplomacy and culture to be boosted in spending round

Boosting Britain’s standing as a major international player post-Brexit will be a key objective of new Government spending plans, Chancellor Sajid Javid has signalled.

Mr Javid intends to use his first set piece event since taking over the Treasury to highlight the UK’s presence on the global stage.

The Chancellor is to use this week’s unveiling of Government spending plans to enhance the UK’s defence and diplomatic ties – as well as celebrate the nation’s culture.

Ahead of the spending round announcement for 2020/2021 on Wednesday, Mr Javid said: “Across our history, Britain has thrived as an open, free-trading nation.

“As we leave the EU, we are deeply committed to playing a leading role on the global stage.

“That means bolstering alliances, celebrating our culture, building new trading relationships and making sure we can act when needed to keep our people safe.

“We shouldn’t be ashamed of being proud of our place in the world – we are and will remain a great nation with fantastic assets.”

The spending round is expected to see the UK’s diplomatic connections across the globe given a £90 million injection.

The defence budget will be boosted by more than the stated commitment to increase spending by at least 0.5% above inflation.

The “Great” campaign aimed at increasing exports will get a £60 million extension.

An initial £13 million will go to support preparations for the UK’s G7 presidency in 2021.

The 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham is to be given an extra £46 million aimed at boosting tourism and jobs linked to the event.

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