CHANCELLOR George Osbourne has delivered his second Budget, setting out his plans for 2011.
That means the growth forecast is down from 2.1 per cent to 1.7 per cent to 2011, and down from 2.6 per cent to 2.5 per cent in 2012.
The Office for Budget Responsibility expects inflation is to remain at four or five per cent in 2011, but to fall to two per cent by 2013.
Fuel duty: All duty rises will remain the same apart from fuel. Price of filling up a Ford Focus, for example has risen by £10, so a Fair Fuel Stabiliser will be introduced. This will be funded by increasing the supplmentary charge on North Sea oil and gas production from 20 per cent to 30 per cent from tomorrow.
Planned fuel duty increase of 1p above inflation will be scrapped, and cancellation of fuel price escalator.
ALSO: Fuel price to be cut by 1p from 6pm tonight
Tax: Osbourne: ‘Tax system should be simple to understand and to comply with.’ The government will consult on merging National Insurance with income tax, and from April, Corporation Tax will be reduced by two per cent rather than one per cent.
Bank levy will rise to offset lower Corporation Tax.
Personal income tax allowance will rise by £1k – or £200 extra for 23m tax payers, with personal allowance rising from £7,475 to £8k in April 2012.
Delay of air passenger duty rise. Private jets will be brought into the scope of taxation.
Tobacco will rise two per cent, but alcohol will remain at current level.
Company car tax: Company car benefit-in-kind tax thresholds will tighten by 5 g/km on April 6, 2013 with the Chancellor confirming already announced thresholds for the next two financial years.
The further tightening of company car tax rates effectively mean that rates for vehicles with emissions of less than 95 g/km are frozen.
Small businesses: A 15 per cent increase in the availability of credit to small businesses, and 50p tax rate should be a temporary measure. Rate relief holiday for small businesses to be extended for a year to October 2012.
Stamp duty: £250m to help first-time buyers purchase newly built homes.
Roads: Extra £100m to help councils repair potholes.
VED: On April 1, 2011, Vehicle Excise Duty rates will increase by the rate of inflation apart from VED on HGVs, which will be frozen in 2011-12.
Enterprise: 21 new Enterprise Zones to be created in England.
Green concerns: ‘Government plans to be greenest government ever.’ Along with other measures, the government will provide incentives for investment in green technology.
Apprenticeships: 24 new university technical colleagues will be funded, another 40,000 new apprenticeships for the young and unemployed, and there will be 100,000 places in a new work experience scheme.