The Straits Times
Published on Oct 10, 2012

British PM tells country more pain to come


BIRMINGHAM, England (REUTERS) - British Prime Minister David Cameron warned voters to brace for "painful decisions" on the economy on Wednesday but offered little new to alter a grim growth outlook which has derailed his efforts to cut the budget deficit.

In a speech to his Conservative party conference, Mr Cameron admitted it was taking longer than planned to fix Britain's recession-hit economy and rein in public finances.

Mr Cameron, insisting his coalition government would not waver from its austerity plan to erase the budget deficit, said failing to get on top of Britain's economic problems would leave it limping along a path to long-term decline.

The Conservatives, in coalition with the smaller Liberal Democrats, have fallen behind a resurgent opposition Labour in opinion polls. Analysts say Mr Cameron faces an uphill slog to win an outright majority in the 2015 election.