In today’s Budget the Chancellor has missed opportunities galore.
UKIP are especially disappointed to note that the scandalous waste of money spent on foreign aid is continuing despite the needs of our own elderly people, and the stretched resources of the NHS. We consider that the Government’s priority of supporting “nation building” in corrupt and often undemocratic countries over the welfare of its own citizens is truly shocking.
The decision to allow more selective schools to open is welcome. The proposed T-levels are a good initiative too, but every child should have the opportunity to pursue technical qualifications, by establishing a Technical School in every area.
We also welcome the investment in social care and the money allocated to place a GP in A&E departments looks sensible.
It is quite astonishing that the Chancellor has breached a promise made in the Tories’ 2015 manifesto not to raise VAT, income tax or National Insurance. By increasing NI contributions for the self-employed, he is punishing hard-working entrepreneurs who are the backbone of our economy. To compound the error, he is also penalising those who have set up their own company by reducing the zero-rate on dividends. We would have preferred him to clamp down on umbrella companies and spurious tax-free expenses regimes used by employment agencies.
The Chancellor did not mention exporters in his speech, nor did he announce any support for this vital sector of the economy. Whilst businesses don’t want Government interference in their affairs, they benefit from a supportive environment and a straightforward tax system. There were no attempts made by this Chancellor to simplify the UK’s unnecessarily-complex tax code.
It is a welcome development that the economy continues to prosper despite the prophets of doom who perpetrated Project Fear last year. It is vital that Britain achieves a clean and swift exit from the EU, and that we establish ourselves as a low-tax, enterprise-friendly country trading with the world. Wasting billions on foreign aid and attacking small business owners is not the way UKIP would have chosen to prepare Britain for our future as a proud, independent nation.