UK borrowing soars to record high of £55bn in May

“The best way to restore our public finances to a more sustainable footing is to safely reopen our economy so people can return to work.” The chancellor added: “We’ve set out our plan to do this in a gradual and safe fashion, including reopening high streets across the country this week, as we kickstart our economic recovery.” Alex Tuckett, senior economist at PwC, said: “In the near term, there are signs the economy is recovering as the country re-opens, and this should boost tax receipts. “However, these figures remind us that chancellor Rishi Sunak faces a difficult backdrop to any summer fiscal event, at which he will want to look for ways to help the recovery gather momentum.” Public sector net debt was £1,950.1 billion at the end of May 2020. Shops saw a much-needed boost in sales last month compared with the record lows in April as lockdown turned thriving high streets into ghost towns, according to the ONS.