© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: New British Chancellor of the Exchequer Kwasi Kwarteng walks outside Number 10 Downing Street, in London, Britain September 6, 2022. REUTERS/Toby Melville//File Photo
LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s new finance minister Kwasi Kwarteng unveiled a slew of measures on Thursday including the reversal of an increase in payroll tax in an effort to boost economic growth. He is expected to detail more measures in a mini-budget on Friday, including tax cuts, energy subsidies and planning reforms. Below is a brief overview of the key measures announced so far, and additional steps that could be announced on Friday. PAYROLL TAX RISE REVERSED A 1.25 percentage point increase in payroll tax – or national insurance – that took effect earlier this year will be reversed from Nov. 6. DIVIDEND TAX RISE SCRAPPED An increase to dividend tax rates which had been brought in alongside the payroll tax increase – to raise contributions from those who are paid through different channels – will be scrapped from April 2023. INVESTMENT ZONES Kwarteng is expected to say on Friday the government is in talks with 38 local authority areas in England to set up investment zones offering “generous, targeted and time-limited tax cuts” for businesses to create jobs and increase productivity. The zones will also see reforms to environmental regulation and streamlined planning polices. INFRASTRUCTURE PROJECTS Kwarteng will also set out measures to speed up the delivery of around 100 major infrastructure projects including wind farms, roads and railways. The measures will include legislation in the coming months to help reduce “unnecessary burdens” to infrastructure projects. NO CORPORATION TAX INCREASE Britain’s 19% corporation tax rate – the lowest among the G7 club of rich nations – had been due to rise to 25% in 2023 but Friday’s mini-budget is expected to scrap those plans.
STAMP DUTY CUT Stamp duty on house purchases will be cut to boost economic growth by enabling first-time buyers to get on the property ladder, the Times newspaper reported on Wednesday.