Ed Balls, Labour’s shadow chancellor, has reiterated his view that VAT should be reduced back from 20% to 17.5% in next month’s Budget. It was among the measures he proposed during an interview on the Andrew Marr Show on BBC1. Other proposals included ending tax breaks for the wealthiest in society. Balls said: “Without decisive action in the Budget to boost growth, I fear we are in a lost decade of slow growth and high unemployment.” It comes as the industry steps up its drive for a VAT cut for the sector. To date, 32 companies have joined the campaign to reduce VAT for the hospitality industry led by French entrepreneur Jacques Borel.