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      Spring Budget 2021

      Finance Director, Robert Atkin Reflects on the Chancellor's Mandate

      The last year has been tough for everyone and the uncertainty surrounding UK businesses, due to COVID-19 and Brexit, has been substantial. It was therefore pleasing to see a bullish budget announcement, with the focus on rebuilding our economy and giving businesses back the certainty, they needed.

      A fine balance was clearly required between helping the economy get back on its feet and starting to pay down the huge bill the country faces. The Chancellor has, in the short term, gone for tax freezes, continued support through the furlough scheme, reduced VAT rates for hospitality and attractive capital allowances on plant and machinery investment.

      In the longer term, the focus will need to shift to paying back the debt and the first step will be the Corporation tax rise in 2023. Whilst no business, including ours, relishes a corporation tax rise, it was positive that this will not be an immediate change and allows businesses the breathing space to recover their position, before the impact of this hits.

      Being a business based in Yorkshire and the North East, it was also very encouraging to see the first signs of the Government’s ‘levelling up’ agenda, with part of the Treasury relocating to Darlington and the plans to set up the first UK infrastructure bank in Leeds. This will be a much-needed boost to our region, as the country looks to bounce back.

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