Budget 2017

On Wednesday 8 March 2017, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Phillip Hammond, delivered not only his first budget but also the first budget since the UK voted to leave the European Union.

Highlights from the Budget Statement include:

  • The main rate of National Insurance contributions for the self-employed to increase from 9% to 10% in April 2018 and 11% in April 2019
  • A tax avoidance clampdown totalling £820m to include action to stop businesses converting capital losses into trading losses and introduction of UK VAT on roaming telecoms services outside the EU
  • £435m for firms affected by increases in business rates, including £300m hardship fund for worst hit as well as rate rises for businesses losing existing relief being capped at £50 a month
  • Transport spending of £90m for the north of England and £23m for the Midlands to address pinch points on roads and £690 million competition fund for English councils to tackle urban congestion
  • £270m for new technologies such as robots and driverless vehicles
  • £16m for 5G mobile technology and £200m for local broadband networks
  • New T-Levels to be introduced to give parity of esteem for technical education
  • A new minimum excise duty on cigarettes based on a packet price of £7.35
  • Duty on beer, cider, wine and spirits will increase in line with RPI inflation
  • Vehicle excise duty rates for hauliers and the HGV Road User Levy frozen for another year

There were also several changes to the tax system that were previously announced, which will come into effect in April 2017, including the following:

  • An increase in the personal tax allowance to £11,500, with a further rise to £12,500 planned by 2020
  • The introduction of a levy to fund apprenticeships

Finally, the government also declared its intentions to improve air quality, stating they intend to explore appropriate tax adjustment options for diesel vehicles in the Autumn Budget 2017.

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