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In this year’s spring statement, chancellor of the exchequer Phillip Hammond, updated us on the overall state of the economy and what to expect throughout the coming year.

Promising figures were shared and the UK economy has exceeded expectations from 2017, with the growth forecast for 2018 being revised from 1.4% up to 1.5%. Over the next 12 months, inflation is expected to fall and over the next five years, wages are expected to rise faster than prices.

Mr. Hammond also revealed that, since 2010, employment has increased by 3 million, with unemployment close to a 40-year low. It was explained in regard to public finances, that the UK’s debt still remains too high, however, borrowing has fallen by three-quarters since 2010 and debt is expected to fall as a share of GDP next year.

The key points for small businesses

“We are the champions of small businesses and the entrepreneur”

During the statement, Mr. Hammond stated that the UK government will “go on supporting British businesses.”

Business rates revaluation will be taking place in 2021

In the Autumn Budget 2017, it was announced that instead of every 5 years, business rates changes will take place every three years to reflect the rental value of properties. This year’s spring statement announces that the revaluation has been brought forward from 2022 to 2021.

Digital connectivity is improving

In the Autumn Budget 2017, the government launched a £190 million challenge fund to improve digital connectivity and roll-out full-fibre broadband across the UK. The chancellor has now revealed the first £95 million has been allocated to 13 areas across the UK.

The government will be seeking views on the role of cash in our economy

Stating that the digital world has changed the way we shop and spend, the government are seeking views on what they can do to support people and businesses who use digital payments, make sure people are still able to pay with cash and prevent cash being used to launder money and evade tax.

Multinational digital businesses pay a fair share of tax

Hammond stated that the government has set out their views on how the tax system can change to ensure a fair result for digital businesses. This is due to the tax that multinational digital businesses pay not always being reflective of the value of the business.

£80 million to support small businesses taking on apprentices

The government are committed to helping businesses looking to employ an apprentice. As the chancellor revealed, the UK government looks to deliver 3 million apprenticeship starts by 2020. He announced that the Education Secretary will release up to £80 million in funding to support these businesses.

Launch call for evidence looking to eliminate late payments

Mr. Hammond said they will launch a call for evidence. This will call on small businesses to give the government a clearer understanding of how they can eliminate late payments and reduce the negative impact they have on small and start-up businesses.

What can we conclude?

Overall, the Spring Statement this year did not share many concrete proposals or set plans, but was more of a recap with predictions. However, some of these points can prove beneficial for small business, but is it enough for you to get behind the Conservative party?

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