Rt Hon Sir David Evennett, MP for Bexleyheath and Crayford and Vice Chairman of the Conservative Party, warmly welcomed the Chancellor of the Exchequer’s (Rt Hon Rishi Sunak MP) Autumn Budget and Spending Review in the House of Commons yesterday.
Mr Sunak outlined the Government’s plans to help working families meet the cost of living, support businesses’ recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, deliver world-class public services, and drive economic growth across the country.
Speaking in the House of Commons yesterday, Sir David focused on the commitments on supporting businesses and boosting skills. Businesses will benefit from a range of new measures, including a 50% cut in business rates next year for 90% of retail, hospitality and leisure, which is alongside a freeze of all rates. The Chancellor also announced the creation of new business rates relief to encourage green technologies and improvements to properties and a doubling of creative industries tax reliefs for the UK’s world-leading theatres, orchestras, museums and galleries.
Among other measures to drive economic growth, overall skills spending will increase 42%, equating to £3.8 billion, over the course of the Parliament. This includes more hours learning for 16 to 19-year-olds, including those who are taking T-levels, more traineeships, building institutes of technology to help to close skills gaps in key STEM areas; funding the lifetime skills guarantee; upgrading the further education college estate, quadrupling the number of places in skills bootcamps. Funding for apprenticeships will also increase to a record £2.7 billion by 2024-25.
Sir David concluded his speech by commenting:
“I am pleased to give this Budget my full support. My right hon. Friend the Chancellor has struck the right balance between improving public services, supporting businesses, upskilling individuals and looking at the public finances. He has delivered a positive and constructive Budget that is good for our country. I think I can do no better than quote my right hon. Friend’s concluding sentence, when he said: “This Budget builds a stronger economy for the British people.”