UK's Osborne 'to abandon 2020 budget surplus target': Report

U.K. Chancellor George Osborne has abandoned his aim to reach a budget surplus by 2020, according to the BBC.

In an online report on Friday, the BBC said it had learned that the finance minister was to drop the target having said that the country had to be "realistic about achieving surplus by the end of the decade."

A spokeswoman for the Treasury told CNBC that Osborne made the the comments at a Greater Manchester Chambers of Commerce event in light of the vote to leave the EU.

In an e-mailed statement, the Treasury cited the Chancellor as saying: "The government must provide fiscal credibility, so we will continue to be tough on the deficit but we must be realistic about achieving a surplus by the end of this decade."

British Finance Minister George Osborne at an event in Manchester, Northern England, on December 8, 2014.
Oli Scarff | AFP | Getty Images
British Finance Minister George Osborne at an event in Manchester, Northern England, on December 8, 2014.

Achieving a budget surplus, where the government earns more than it spends, was a key target for Osborne who has overseen an austerity drive while in office since 2010. Since the vote to leave the European Union (EU) last week, however, Osborne has warned that there would be no "plain sailing" for the U.K. economy.

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