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Budget brings 'mixed fortunes' for NE businesses - NECC

Date 22 Mar 2007
Author The Editor

The North East Chamber of Commerce yesterday said there were mixed fortunes for businesses in the latest Budget. The Chancellor Gordon Brown unveiled what was expected to be a revenue neutral budget.

Mike Parker, NECC spokesman, said: “Two headline features will stick out for business – the cut in corporation tax from 30p to 28p and the staggered increase in tax rates for small companies rising from 20p to 22p by 2009. “The Chancellor has to be applauded for appreciating the significance of the relatively high rates UK companies are paying. Cutting corporation tax is an extremely positive move and will place North East businesses on a more competitive footing when taking on global markets.”

However, the NECC raised concerns that the Government was increasing tax rates for small companies in a bid to tackle tax evasion, which the organisation feels could potentially be disruptive to efforts to encourage a more entrepreneurial culture in the North East.

Despite this, there were other bright spots in the budget. Mr Parker said: “The introduction of a £2,000 grant to incentivise smaller businesses to invest in training their workforce is a good move. Firms of all shapes and sizes have to be aware of the benefits that will come from constantly improving the skills of their staff. “We are also pleased to learn of the increased investment in science and biofuels, both of which will play an ever more important role in the North East economy.”

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