Britain's new finance minister Kwasi Kwarteng told financial market leaders on Wednesday that the government's first priority to support families and businesses will mean higher borrowing in the short term, according to a statement from his office.

In his first move since being appointed by prime minister Liz Truss on Tuesday he met senior banking figures from the City of London to set out the government’s new, pro-growth economic approach.

"Due to the scale of the gas crisis, the government’s first priority will be to support families and businesses in the immediate term," the statement said.

"The Chancellor was clear this will mean necessary higher borrowing in the short-term whilst ensuring monetary stability and fiscal discipline over the medium term."

Kwarteng used the meeting to state his full support for the independent Bank of England and their mission to control inflation, which is central to tacking cost of living challenges.

"We face extraordinary economic challenges in the coming weeks and months and I know that families and businesses across the UK are worried," Kwarteng said in a statement.

"The Prime Minister and I are committed to taking decisive action to help the British people now, while pursuing an unashamedly pro-growth agenda."

"We need to be decisive and do things differently. That means relentlessly focusing on how we unlock business investment and grow the size of the British economy, rather than how we redistribute what’s left."

“With a strong and resilient economy, we deliver more jobs, higher wages, and raised living standards – all while reducing our debt-to-GDP ratio in a fiscally sustainable way.” (Reporting by William James, writing by Muvija M)