Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond, delivered the final Spring Budget statement in the House of Commons this afternoon and the Spring Budget 2017 is now available. He stated his plans were intended to give the UK economy strong foundations and a global outlook as the country prepared to leave the EU. Noting the British economy grew faster than those of the United States, Japan and France in 2016, he highlighted improvements in the levels of employment and unemployment. He welcomed a fall in the deficit but acknowledged debt was still too high and productivity too low.
The Chancellor said the Budget settlement would result in an additional £350m for Scottish Government. Other key announcements included:
- Plans to cut corporation tax in a bid to make the UK the best place in the world to do business.
- A one-year delay in the quarterly reporting for businesses that do not meet the VAT registration threshold.
- Measures to tackle tax avoidance, evasion and non-compliance including stopping businesses converting capital losses into trading losses and penalties for professionals enabling avoidance.
- A forthcoming consultation on parental benefit disparities between the self-employed and employees.
- Plans to close the gap in National Insurance Contributions between the self-employed and employees, reflecting the new state pension entitlements of the former.
- A reduction in the tax free-dividend allowance of directors and shareholders in Limited Liability Companies.
- No changes to the planned upratings of duties on alcohol and cigarettes.
- An increase in the personal allowance to £11,500.