The UK Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne gave his Budget to Parliament on Wednesday 16 March 2016. In it he addressed some areas of particular relevance to business, including:
The chancellor announced a new £15,000 threshold for small business rate relief, more than double the previous level of £6,000. He also increased the higher rate from £18,000 to £51,000, and said the changes mean 600,000 small firms will pay no business rates at all.
The chancellor announced a range of measures to stop multinational companies manipulating the complexities in the tax system and avoiding payment. However, he also announced that corporation tax was to be to cut to 17% by April 2020. The Treasury estimates this will benefit one million companies.
Tax allowances and NICs, online allowances and higher rates
The self-employed will soon no longer have to pay class 2 national insurance contributions as it is to be abolished from April 2018. The chancellor is also raising the threshold for paying income tax to £11,500 by 2017. The threshold for paying the higher rate of tax is also to be raised, from £43,000 to £45,000 in the tax year 2017/18.
It is widely thought that the chancellor in his announcements sought to hold on to small business support and the support of tax payers at large ahead of the European referendum planned for 23rd June 2016.