Autumn Statement: Good News for Exports – Bad for Business Rates
His speech and the supporting documentation set out both tax and economic measures including:
*The government reaffirming the objectives to raise the personal allowance to £12,500 and the higher rate threshold to £50,000 by the end of this Parliament
*Reduction of the Money Purchase Annual Allowance
*Review of ways to build on research and development tax relief
*Tax and National Insurance advantages of salary sacrifice schemes to be removed
*Anti-avoidance measures for the VAT Flat Rate Scheme
In addition the Chancellor announced the following pay and welfare measures:
*National Living Wage to rise from £7.20 an hour to £7.50 from April 2017
*Universal Credit taper rate to be cut from 65% to 63% from April 2017.
In terms of Trade 3.33 UK Export Finance (UKEF) – The government will provide additional support through UKEF to ensure that no viable UK export should fail for lack of finance or insurance from the private sector, by:
*Doubling its total risk appetite to £5 billion, and increasing capacity for support in individual markets by up to 100%; this will be supported by an improved risk management framework and the use of private insurance markets to reduce Exchequer exposure
“I am doubling UK Export Finance capacity to make it easier for British businesses to export,” stated Hammond.
*Increasing the number of pre-approved local currencies in which UKEF can offer support from 10 to 40, enabling more overseas buyers of UK exports to pay in their own currency
However, the chancellor has been criticised for failing to address the burden of business rates within the Autumn Statement, as forecasts suggest next year is going to be even more challenging with slower growth and rising inflation.