Kwasi Kwarteng has been fired as chancellor by Prime Minister Liz Truss over the fallout from his mini-budget.
The chancellor of the exchequer was dismissed in person by Truss after he rushed back early from international meetings in Washington, multiple media reports said, and she was due later to hold her first Downing Street news conference.
There was no immediate announcement of his successor, who would become Britain’s fourth Finance Minister this year.
Kwarteng recently introduced a mini-budget last month included the removal of the cap on bankers’ bonuses, a cut to the top rate of income tax , and the scrapping of a planned rise to corporation tax.
Overall, the mini-budget amounted to £45 billion in unfunded tax cuts.
In Kwarteng’s letter to Truss accepting her request to stand down as chancellor, he reaffirmed his belief that her vision for the economy was “right”.
He wrote: “For too long this country has been dogged by low growth rates and high taxation – that must still change if this country is to succeed
“It is important now as we move forward to emphasize your government’s commitment to fiscal discipline. The Medium-Term Fiscal Plan is crucial to this end, and I look forward to supporting you and my successor to achieve that from the backbenches.”
Kwarteng also stressed that he would continue to support Truss.
He added: “We have been colleagues and friends for many years. In that time, I have seen your dedication and determination. I believe your vision is the right one. It has been an honor to serve as your first chancellor.
Commenting on Kwarteng’s sacking, the SNP‘s deputy leader at Westminster, Kirsten Oswald, said that no attempt to “pass the buck” can disguise that “Liz Truss is up to her neck in this”.
She added: “The disastrous policies in the UK budget were the central plank of her Tory leadership campaign. It was her reckless incompetence that trashed the UK economy – and she is to blame for the damage to people’s mortgage rates, pensions and household budgets.
“With her chancellor gone, it’s unclear what justification there is for Liz Truss remaining in post.
“For Scotland, this Tory-made economic crisis has demonstrated why we need independence to escape the chaos of Westminster control and get rid of Tory governments for good.”
The co-leader of the Scottish Greens, Lorna Slater, has described Kwarteng’s tenure as chancellor as “short, destructive and disastrous”.
She added: “In only a few short weeks he’s done years of damage. His calamitous budget caused crisis after crisis.”
Slater went on to say that Kwarteng “didn’t do it alone” and that he was “cheered to the rafters by his Tory colleagues”.
She continued: “It’s not just the Chancellor who needs to go. It is also this dangerous Prime Minister who appointed him and the Cabinet who have supported him every step of the way.
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“This has already gone on too long, and far too many people are suffering. If Liz Truss wants to emerge with any shred of credibility then it can’t just be her chancellor that leaves Downing Street, it must also be her.”
It has also been reported that Chris Philp has been sacked as chief secretary to the Treasury.
PoliticsHome’s political editor Adam Payne tweeted: “Chief Secretary to the Treasury Chris Philp is also on his way out, @politicshome understands”
He later wrote: “Whitehall source: ‘Truss is trying to put clear blue water between the shit show and her'”
Philp had supported Truss’s bid to become prime minister after he stood down from Boris Johnson’s government in the wake of the former PM’s handling of the Chris Pincher scandal.