This week the Chancellor delivered his Autumn Statement which showed that the UK is the fastest-growing major economy in the world and which reported higher growth, lower unemployment, falling inflation and a falling deficit.


Mims Davies says, "The Autumn Statement shows our long-term economic plan is working and we are on course to prosperity – with higher growth, lower unemployment, low inflation, and a falling deficit."


But the job isn’t done, and Britain now faces a choice. We could either squander our economic security by going back to the disastrous spending, borrowing and taxes that got us into a mess in the first place, or we can stay on the course to prosperity.


We are not returning to the same failed ideas of the past – we will continue to work through our long-term economic plan that’s securing a better future for our economy, for our country and for hardworking taxpayers.


The main forecasts in the Autumn Statement:


·         Falling deficit – the deficit will be down by a half this year.


·         The British economy expected to grow by 3 per cent this year.


·         Employment up and unemployment down.


·         Rising earnings with lower inflation.


The main measures outlined in the Autumn Statement:


·       Reforming stamp duty – a tax cut for 98 per cent of those who pay stamp duty. The slab system distorted the market with big jumps in taxes when house values climbed into a new band. Our new slice system will work like income tax, so you only pay the higher rate on the part of the property that falls within that band. 98 per cent of buyers who pay stamp duty will pay less. The buyer of the average family home (worth £275,000) will pay £4,500 less. Of people who pay stamp duty in London, 91 per cent will pay less. This is a tax cut of £800 million a year.


·     Backing the aspiration to work and save. When the holder of an ISA dies, a husband or wife will be able to inherit their partner’s ISA and keep its tax free status. We will abolish National Insurance Contributions for employers who employ an apprentice under 25 to back young people to get the skills they need to get on in life.


·         Cutting income tax. The tax-free Personal Allowance will now increase to £10,600 in April and this will be passed on in full to higher rate taxpayers – the first increase in the higher threshold in line with inflation for five years. This is a down-payment on our commitment to raise the higher rate threshold to £50,000 by the end of the decade.


·         Cutting Air Passenger Duty for children. From May, APD for under 12s will be abolished and from 2016 it will be abolished for under 16s.


·     Supporting small businesses with action on business rates and more help for the high street. We will again extend the doubling of Small Business Rate Relief and continue to cap the inflation-linked increase in business rates at 2 per cent. The £1,000 discount for shops and cafes on the high street will increase to £1,500 and there will be a full review of the structure of business rates to report before Budget 2016. We will increase the R&D tax credit for SME firms to 230 per cent, the maximum allowed and extend the Funding for Lending scheme by another year – focusing it entirely on small businesses. 


·       Supporting science with help for post-graduates. Student loans of £10,000 for young people undertaking post-graduate masters degrees will be backed by the government for the first time.


·    Creating a Northern Powerhouse. We will tender for new franchises for Northern Rail and the Trans-Pennine Express – replacing the pacer carriages with modern trains. There will be a £235 million investment in a new Sir Henry Royce Centre for advanced material science in Manchester, with branches in Leeds, Liverpool and Sheffield. A new Sovereign Wealth Fund for the North of England will ensure the resources from shale gas in the North are invested in the North.


·         Tackling tax avoidance. We will introduce a 25 per cent tax on multinationals that artificially divert profits, and limit how much banks can offset previous losses against profits. We will increase charges for non-doms so everyone pays their fair share.


·         Updated Charter for Budget Responsibility. We will publish this next week to lock in discipline over our public finances for the future.


Promoted by Judy Jamieson on behalf of Mims Davies both of Eastleigh Conservatives, The Hill, Upper Northam Close, Hedge End, Southampton S030 4BB