Chancellor Jeremy Hunt branded ‘Mr Bean’ for videoon January 18, 2023 at 11:46 am

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Jeremy Hunt drew comparisons to the comic character as he used coffee cups to explain soaring costs.

Jeremy Hunt, UK chancellorImage source, HMTreasury

Chancellor Jeremy Hunt has been criticised and compared to Mr Bean over a social media video in which he uses coffee cups to explain inflation.

In the video, Mr Hunt orders a flat white before explaining what he is doing to tackle rising prices.

He says a cup of coffee a year ago was around £2.50, but is now £3. He then sets out the reasons for high inflation, such as the war in Ukraine.

Both Labour and Liberal Democrats criticised the chancellor’s video.

Sarah Olney, the Lib Dems’ Treasury spokesperson, said the “last thing” families needed was a “Mr Bean-esque video” from the Conservative party.

“What’s even more shocking is that Jeremy Hunt airbrushed one of the main causes of economic pain – Liz Truss’ disastrous mini-budget that resulted in the biggest tax hike for a generation,” she added.

“How is that supposed to help Britain with inflation?”

A Labour source added: “The chancellors ‘not me guv’ explainer misses out the fundamental fact that the British public have been so exposed to economic shocks and the energy crisis because of 13 years of Tory failure.”

The Treasury has been contacted by the BBC for comment.

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites.View original tweet on Twitter

In the video, posted on early Wednesday, Mr Hunt explains there are “lots of reasons” inflation has gone up, citing Covid, and the war in Ukraine pushing up food and energy prices.

“All that means is the price of a cup of coffee has gone up,” he adds.

Mr Hunt says the government is investing in renewable and nuclear energy and energy efficient programmes as well as taking “difficult decisions to balance the nation’s books” to “halve inflation”.

“That’s what’s happening, and that’s our plan”, he adds.

In response to the clip, Fraser Nelson, editor of the Spectator magazine, tweeted: “I wonder if Hunt explains that a Chancellor has no real power over inflation – and that it’s expected to halve in France, Germany, US, Canada, Israel & more.

“None of whose finance ministers are trying to take credit for this global trends.”

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has pledged to halve inflation this year but many forecasters have predicted this will happen as the cost of energy falls.

Another user responded: “Who makes these? The script, camera angles, editing and even lens choices come together to create a condescending, mid-20th-century didactic tone.”

The video was released after the latest inflation figures were released early on Wednesday.

Inflation, which measures the rate of price rises, fell to 10.5% in the year to December from 10.7% in November.

Although price rises slowed for a second month in a row, the cost of food including milk, cheese and eggs kept inflation at a 40-year high.

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