"My message to the party and the country is simple: I have a plan to steer our country through these headwinds. Once we have gripped inflation, I will get the tax burden down. It is a question of when, not if," former UK Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak said on Tuesday, 12 July, as he launched his campaign for the prime minister's post.
According to a report by Reuters, he also emphasised the need to "return to traditional Conservative economic values – and that means honesty and responsibility, not fairy tales."
"It is not credible to promise lots more spending and lower taxes," Sunak said, adding, "We need to have a grown-up conversation about the central policy question that all candidates have to answer in this election: Do you have a credible plan to protect our economy and get it growing?"Rishi Sunak.
Inflation hit a four-decade high of 9.1 percent in May.
"I have had to make some of the most difficult choices in my life when I was Chancellor, in particular how to deal with our debt and borrowing after COVID," Sunak admitted during his campaign.
The Indian-origin politician's popularity, however, has dropped this year due to the controversy surrounding his wife Akshata Murthy's non-domicile status in the UK.
Sunak's failure to curb inflation and resolve the cost-of-living crisis also contributed to the fall in his ratings.
After his resignation from Johnson's Cabinet, however, his ratings are gradually back on the rise, and on Sunak's heels within the party is former Health Secretary Sajid Javid.
You can read about the full list of contenders that would fight it out to replace him here.
(With inputs from Reuters.)