Oxfordshire businesses to benefit from Chancellor's 'Growth' Budget
PUBLISHED: 16:27 22 March 2013 | UPDATED: 21:16 05 April 2013
A drop in the rate of corporation tax, national insurance holidays and a 'Growth Vouchers' initiative, were among a raft of measures designed to help businesses, unveiled in the Chancellor's budget on Wednesday.
Oxfordshire businesses to benefit fromChancellors Growth Budget
A drop in the rate of corporation tax, national insurance holidays and a Growth Vouchers initiative, were among a raft of measures designed to help businesses, unveiled in the Chancellors budget on Wednesday.
Stimulating business growth was a major theme of this years budget. The Government hopes to achieve this through direct help for companies and by creating easier economic conditions for them to grow. Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) are to play an increasingly important role in supporting business - working with key local partners to provide the infrastructure, housing and transport that companies need to achieve growth.
Making it easier for companies to take on new staff and create more jobs, the Government announced a new 2,000 Employment Allowance to reduce National Insurance Contributions from April 2014. To help encourage more investors to support startups, it announced a limited extension of the capital gains tax holiday for the Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme to 2014-15. This will now provide investors with a 50% capital gains tax relief when gains are reinvested into startup companies. (see link below for more information).
The main rate of corporation tax is to be cut to 20% in April 2015, to create a single rate of across business. This now gives the UK the lowest corporation tax in the G20 group of countries (see link below for more information).
Oxfordshire businesses working in the Automotive, Life Science and Aerospace sectors stand to benefit from a new 1.6bn Government fund. This is aimed at supporting the growth of these and 8 more sectors around the UK, that the Government believes have the potential to be global leaders. Other initiatives that Oxfordshire businesses can take advantage of include; the launch of Growth Vouchers which will help small businesses to expand, an increase in research and development tax credits and greater opportunities for small businesses to compete for Government contracts (see link below for more information).
As part of a wider efforts to promote growth, the Government plans to spend an additional 3bn per year on infrastructure projects from 2015-16. This builds on work the Oxfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership is already involved in, which includes solving traffic bottle necks at Junction 9 of the M40 and at the Milton Interchange on the A34, amongst others. Reforms and additional funds of 5.4bn were also announced to deal with long term problems in the housing market, to support those trying to get on or move up the housing ladder.
Central to its growth plans are Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) whose role it is to support private sector business and the creation of new jobs.
In order to raise the funds and investment needed for their local areas, all 39 Local Enterprise Partnerships, including Oxfordshires, will have to submit detailed strategic multi-year plans to Government, setting out their plans for growth in each of their local areas (see link below for more information).
Decisions on strategic issues and major investments at local level will be made by LEPs, with local authorities delivering or commissioning the work required. From 2015, LEPs will be required to bid competitively for funds to carry out work in their areas from a single pot of money held centrally by Government. They will also be able to bid for EU funding for their areas based on their strategic plans.
Ian Wenman, Vice Chairman of the Oxfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership, said, Its clear that Local Enterprise Partnerships are becoming an increasingly important vehicle for delivering economic growth both nationally and in Oxfordshire. The Oxfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership Board is excited by the opportunity this represents for helping to assure the long term prosperity of Oxfordshire. We have so many strengths to build on here in Oxfordshire but our success will depend on all of our partners being focused and working together to achieve our shared business and economic ambitions.
For more information and on this years budget visit http://www.hm-treasury.gov.uk/budget2013.htm
More information can be found at www.oxfordshirelep.org.uk
About the Oxfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership
The Oxfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership was formally launched by the Business Minister, Mark Prisk MP, in March 2011, to be responsible for businesses, academia and the public sector, it is driving economic development across the county.
The Partnerships overarching aim is to be the catalyst for realising Oxfordshires economic and commercial potential.
The Partnership supports and champion key programmes that are helping to further realise the economic dynamism of Oxfordshire:
- Getting the county connected to fast broadband access and improve mobile phone coverage
- Improving the skills of Oxfordshires workforce and those people about to enter the workforce
- Increasing inward investment in Oxfordshire
- Enabling improved access to finance
- Developing the business support services for Oxfordshires businesses
- Improving infrastructure for growth and jobsEncouraging innovation across the county