George Osborne warned Monday that the government needs to find an extra £25 billion ($41 billion, 30 billion euros) of painful cuts after next year's British general election.
In a speech later on Monday, the Chancellor of the Exchequer will warn that 2014 is to be the year of "hard truths" and that although Britain had cut the budget deficit, it was still borrowing around £100 billion a year.
"We need to find a further £25 billion of cuts after the election. We have to make decisions about where those cuts are to be found," he told BBC radio.
"We have to make decisions about whether we seek them in departments or whether we seek them in the welfare budget. But the reason we need to make those savings, this is not an end in itself, this is a means to an end."
Osborne, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, said he wanted Britain to be "a country in control of its own destiny".
"And a country which is saddled not just with a high deficit, but also a high debt, is one that can't do those things," he said.
Osborne said that there was no "magic wand" he could wave to make Britain richer.
He was to tell an audience in central England that there is "still a long way to go" in reducing the public deficit, despite three years of austerity since the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition came to power.
"As a result of the painful cuts we've made, the deficit is down by a third," he was to say, according to pre-released extracts. "That's the good news.
"We're borrowing around £100 billion a year ?- and paying half that money a year in interest just to service our debts.
"We've got to make more cuts. That's why 2014 is the year of hard truths... the year when Britain faces a choice."
Prime Minister David Cameron on Sunday promised any revenue from tax cuts would benefit lower income earners, and told pensioners they would continue to receive guaranteed rises in their state payouts until at least 2020 if the Conservatives win the next general election.
Cameron vowed that a Tory government would continue the so-called "triple lock" system, meaning pensions would rise in line with the higher rate -- inflation or wages -- or 2.5 percent.
"A Conservative government will offer pensioners a more secure future by pledging today that we will carry on using the triple lock after the next election to protect the basic state pension," Cameron wrote in the Sunday Times.
"We can only afford to do this because we are taking difficult decisions to cut the deficit and get spending under control as part of our long-term economic plan."
The premier has already suggested that the state pension would be the only benefit exempt from a new cap on overall welfare spending.
The opposition Labour party has also said it was committed to the triple lock if it wins power in 2015.
Date created : 2014-01-06