March 19, 2020 / 9:14 AM / 16 days ago

UK must move fast to help companies and workers - OBR's Bean

Commuters walk through Canary Wharf, as the number of coronavirus cases grow around the world, in London, Britain March 16, 2020. REUTERS/Dylan Martinez

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain’s government needs to move fast to help companies and reduce job losses as the coronavirus spreads, one of the country’s independent budget forecasters said on Thursday.

“The one thing ... I think would be mistaken would be to hold up providing the necessary, immediate assistance which is required to business, and also to keep people in jobs, in order to hang lots of additional conditions,” Charlie Bean, a member of the Office for Budget Responsibility, told BBC radio.

Finance minister Rishi Sunak has announced a range of measures to help companies and he said on Wednesday that the government was moving quickly to provide more support for workers.

Writing by William Schomberg; editing by Guy Faulconbridge

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