Spring Budget 2020
The Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak has delivered the first Budget speech, covering a number of changes to National insurance thresholds, infrastructure spending, pensions and broadband. There was also a clear focus on measures that will be put in place to alleviate the impact of the current coronavirus pandemic.
The first Budget speech in over a year was opened by his plan to combat the outbreak of Covid-19, including extra NHS funding, extending statutory sick pay, helping small business with the cost of paying statutory sick pay and reforming business rates. In total the allotted spend on bracing the economy for the outbreak is set at £30 billion, with the promise that more will be spent if needed.
The National Insurance threshold has been raised so that National Insurance contributions (NICs) will be payable only on annual earnings above £9,500 in the next tax year, up from £8,632 this year. The Chancellor has said that this will amount to a tax cut for 31 million people in the UK.
Buyers based overseas will now have to pay a 2% stamp duty surcharge on residential property in England and Northern Ireland from April 2021. If these buyers are not intending to live in the property themselves, they will have to pay an additional 3% – totaling 5% above the standard rate, with the Government saying that the money from this surcharge will be used to reduce rough sleeping.
Other topics for change included a boost in flood defences, a cut on taxes on green transport and the reduction of Entrepreneurs’ Relief.
More information can be found on the Government website at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/spring-budget-2020-english-regional-factsheets