Reflecting on the announcements made in last week’s Spring 2023 Budget, Miranda Barker OBE, Chief Executive Officer at East Lancashire Chamber of Commerce, commented:

“I’m glad to see the support emerging for getting people back into work, for both parents and potential early retirees. Skills shortages are now holding back every single business sector, and in turn, damaging UK prosperity.

“Regarding the corporation tax increase, it is all very well saying there will be inward investment relief to offset it – but that doesn’t help a small business with less investment to put back into next year’s operations, in the face of rising wages and energy bills.

“We also heard that the Energy Price Relief Scheme will be transitioning to a much less beneficial Energy Price Discount Scheme. It seems that our government still doesn’t understand that businesses and households are two sides of the same coin on this. Businesses’ prices are now expected to rocket at the end of March with the reduction in support – potentially going up by a massive 400%. If jobs are lost, households won’t be able to afford even government-subsidised bills.

“Finally, addressing the investment zones around the UK, it is a pity not to see any of these planned for areas like Lancashire, where there are huge investment and development opportunities in new tech fields – just not in a combined authority area.”

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Published On: March 21st, 2023
Budget 2023