I just wanted to talk about the relief in Stoke-on-Trent as well. Entrepreneurs’ relief in my constituency will help many businesses that are starting up. We have some fantastic retention rates in Stoke-on-Trent; we have some of the highest new business start-up retention rates in the country, and that relief is critical in helping those businesses.
The measures introduced in the Budget to increase the time period from 12 to 24 months will help to ensure that it is businesses that are genuinely contributing to our economy that will receive the relief, making a huge contribution to the development of new technologies and innovation that we so much support in our economies throughout the country.
The proposed reductions in corporation tax in the Budget and the relief on capital allowances, which my hon. Friend Richard Graham spoke about, will also be a huge support for many of the businesses in my constituency, particularly manufacturers. Around 15% of the economy in Stoke-on-Trent is made up of manufacturing businesses. Those measures will be a huge support for those businesses, increasing the amount of machinery and equipment that they can buy. Increasing relief on capital allowances and the investment allowance up to £1 million will help more of those businesses to buy new equipment and invest in the plant in their factories. I welcome that measure, which will help not just those manufacturing businesses, but the huge number of businesses up and down the country that produce that machinery and the workforces in those industries, which are so valued up and down the country.