6 March 2024
MP welcomes tax-cutting Budget

Today, the Chancellor, Jeremy Hunt, presented his Spring Budget to the House, which is aimed primarily at continuing the journey to a high-wage, high-skilled, low-tax UK economy but at the same time supporting working families and the most vulnerable.

With inflation down from 11.1% to 4.0% per cent in less than 12 months and wages growing, I am pleased that the Conservative Government remains focused on cutting the taxes that help to grow the economy. Yes, taxes are currently higher than envisaged due to the heavy borrowing that was needed to help people during the pandemic, but the path to lower taxes remains clear and will happen. Inflation is on target to be below 2% in the coming months!

Bracknell Forest has always been a borough where ambition, aspiration and enterprise are celebrated. Opportunity is created through our fantastic local schools, colleges and employers and our highly skilled local workforce benefits from near full employment. The Spring Budget rewards that proud work ethos and cuts taxes for hardworking business owners. It also continues to drive down inflation to help with the cost of living, incentivises further growth through the fiscal headroom we have and supports the public services that we all rely on.

As a result of #SpringBudget24, the Government will:

✂️ Cut National Insurance contributions (NICs) from 10% to 8%. This is in addition to the tax cut announced in the Autumn Statement 2023, meaning the Government will deliver a reduction worth £900 for those on an average wage of £35,400. A family with two earners on the average income of £35,400 each will be better off by £1,827 a year.

✂️ Cut Class 4 NICs for the Self Employed to 6%. Taken alongside the Autumn Statement 2023, this is a tax cut of £650 for the typical self-employed worker on £28,000.

📈 Increase the registration threshold for VAT from £85,000 to £90,000 for small businesses, allowing them to focus on their priorities of expanding their businesses and creating jobs. This will mean that the UK’s VAT registration threshold will be higher than across the EU.

📈 Provide an extra £500m for the Household Support Fund to support the most vulnerable. I was able to lobby in support of Bracknell Forest Council to an expected figure of c.£1m.

📈 Raise the threshold at which parents start paying the High-Income Child Benefit Charge from £50,000 to £60,000. This will support families in Bracknell Forest who will be better off by an average of £1,260.

🧊 Freeze fuel duty for the 14th consecutive year, saving people money when they fill up at the pump and ensuring that businesses can keep their costs as low as possible.

📈 Extend the alcohol duty freeze, thereby alleviating pressure on the hospitality sector with duty two pence lower on a pint of beer and ten pence lower on the average bottle of wine.

📈 Invest an additional £3.4 billion into the NHS in order to reform outdated IT systems and procure modern AI-enabled MRI scanners that will cut scan times by over a third. Based on our Long-Term Workforce Plan, this investment in technology and innovation, together with reform of NHS productivity and incentives, will overhaul the way the NHS works, reducing administrative burdens, freeing up doctors and nurses to focus on treating patients, and unlocking £35 billion of cumulative productivity savings by 2030.

📈 Invest £800m in new technology to save up to 55,000 hours a year of administrative time in the justice system, creating new children’s social care places to reduce costs for local authorities and saving £100 million for the public purse by reducing fraud, thanks to expanding the use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) to catch fraudsters.

Given that #SpringBudget24 is unlikely to be the only fiscal event of the year, I am confident that further tax cuts and policy incentives will follow as the economy continues its recovery.