On 27 October, The Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, announced his budget in the House of Commons. After a telling off from the Madam Speaker, Eleanor Laing, for releasing too much to the press, he soon got into his stride, confidently outlining his plans to build a new post-Covid economy.
Although the country still has a huge challenge on its hands, it was comforting to hear that the UK economy is set to recover 12 months earlier than forecast, returning to pre-Covid levels in 2022 with a 6.5% annual growth this year.
In his second budget, Rishi promised to simultaneously deliver growth and jobs, whilst reducing national debt. His strategy will invest in skills, services, working families and levelling up.
In our DJH Mitten Clarke Autumn Budget Report we look at the Chancellor's strategy in detail, however here are the key headlines impacting business:
- National Living Wage will increase to £9.50 per hour from 1st April 2022.
- Continued investment to upskill the workforce through:
- Increase to adult skills funding
- New UK-wide Multiply programme to support adults to improve numeracy skills.
- £2.7 billion increase to apprenticeship funding.
- Reforms to R&D tax relief.
- Extension of temporary £1 million level Annual Investment Allowance to March 2023 to support businesses to invest and grow.
- Business rates retained and reformed.
- Business rates discount of 50% in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors in England, up to a maximum of £110,000.
- Tax relief on green investments.
- Investment of 3.9billion to decarbonise buildings to become net zero.
- Fuel duty rate frozen for 12th consecutive year.
- Air Passenger duty will be subject to a new lower rate on domestic flights, whilst increased on ultra-long-haul flights of over 5,500 miles from April 2023.
- Alcohol duties frozen across the board.
Although a lot was covered in the overall, as predicted it was a relatively quiet budget for business. Our special 2021 Autumn Budget Report sets out the economic background, the measures introduced by The Chancellor and the early reaction to his speech.
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