- Budget delivers on commitment to provide security and stability to the British people through the pandemic – providing over £407 billion of support for families, jobs and businesses over this year and next.
- Key measures include extending furlough to the end of September, two further grants for the self-employed, a six month extension to the Universal Credit uplift, and new grants and loans for businesses.
- Announcements to build the economy include 45 new Town Deals, eight freeports, and a new Help to Grow scheme to boost the productivity of small businesses – delivering on the Conservatives’ agenda to level up across the country and build back better from the pandemic.
Torbay’s MP Kevin Foster has welcomed the Spring Budget which provides billions of pounds to support businesses and families through the pandemic and invests in the UK’s future economy.
On Wednesday, the Government set out an ambitious plan which focuses on supporting people and businesses through this moment of crisis – well beyond the end of the roadmap out of lockdown – to ensure they have the security and stability they need.
At the heart of the Budget are measures to build our future economy, levelling up across all regions of the United Kingdom and spreading opportunity everywhere.
As part of the Government’s commitments to fund the nation’s priorities, the Budget confirmed:
- An extension of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme until the end of September, ensuring it continues to support employers as they begin to reopen. Two further grants will also be available to self-employed people – and the newly self-employed will also be eligible for both grants.
- A continuation of the temporary Universal Credit uplift for a further six months. The Budget also confirms new support for providing young people with new skills: including doubling the incentive payment to SMEs to take on apprentices of any age to £3,000, and £126 million to triple the number of traineeships next year.
- New Recovery Loans and a new Restart grant of up to £18,000 to help businesses as they reopen. Support for the sports, arts and culture sectors will also be increased by a further £700 million as they begin to reopen.
- Extending the business rates holiday, VAT cut for hospitality and stamp duty holiday. There will also be a new mortgage guarantee scheme from April which backs 95 per cent mortgages – helping those with smaller deposits.
- Opening up the new Levelling Up Fund for its first round of bids, worth £4.8 billion across the United Kingdom. This includes £150,000 of LEVELLING UP FUND CAPACITY FUNDING for Torbay Council.
- Announcing the locations of eight freeports in England, including Plymouth, which will encourage free trade and bring investment to all regions of the country through lower taxes and cheaper customs.
- Launching the first ever UK Infrastructure Bank – located in Leeds – to invest in public and private projects to drive green growth and create green jobs.
- A new Help to Grow scheme to boost productivity of small businesses, to ensure they are embracing the latest technology and management training.
- Being honest with the British people about the need to fix the public finances. We are standing by our manifesto pledge not to increase Income Tax, NICs or VAT and we are freezing alcohol duty, and fuel duty for the 11th year in a row. However to fix the public finances, corporation tax on large company profits will increase to 25 per cent in 2023. This will be tapered and 70 per cent of businesses will be completely unaffected.
Commenting, Kevin Foster MP said:
“This Budget will support our economy through the remainder of the lockdown and boost our bay’s recovery. The continuing support for local businesses through furlough and the business rates holiday will ensure many survive to the sunnier times of summer here in our bay.”
On the £150,000 of Levelling Up Capacity Funding for Torbay he added:
“This is another welcome sign of the Government recognising the needs of and opportunities for investment in our bay. Following on from the £21.9m Torquay Town Deal and £13.5m of support for Paignton’s Future High Streets Fund, this additional opportunity is one we must seize and ensure we turn the tide of decline and look forward to a new golden age for our bay.”
Photo was taken before COVID lockdown