Basic rate limit and personal allowance

Part of Finance (No. 3) Bill – in the House of Commons at 6:45 pm on 19th November 2018.

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Photo of Alex Burghart Alex Burghart Conservative, Brentwood and Ongar 6:45 pm, 19th November 2018

My hon. Friend is too modest; I know not only that it was an excellent reform brought about under a Conservative Administration, where we went from the LEGO building-block approach to stamp duty that he described to something much smoother and more pristine, but that he was working in the Treasury at the time and was instrumental in bringing about that excellent reform. It has made stamp duty not only fairer, but much more sensible for anyone seeking to buy a property.

Let me turn to business, clause 38 and the necessary additional relief being given to entrepreneurs. As a number of hon. Members have made clear, these are people who are looking to start businesses, so as to employ people, and to create an economic dynamism in their communities and their areas. I go back to remarks made by my hon. Friend Jack Brereton about how he has seen employment and business growth in his area. I was having a conversation earlier with another hon. Friend from the north-east, where, the Conservatives again have seats in Parliament—that is no accident. We have seats in Parliament in the north-east because of the record levels of jobs growth and business growth that have happened in those constituencies since 2010. Voters understand success and successful policies when they see them, which is why people such as my hon. Friend are capable of winning seats such as Stoke-on-Trent South. This happened because of the enormous benefits of Conservative policy since 2010.

A measure in the Budget that has meant a great deal to my area has been the substantial improvement in business rates. As I say, Brentwood and Ongar is a hive of Thatcherite prosperity. It has a huge number of small, medium-sized and large enterprises within its boundaries, most of which have been built by the sweat of local people, and are the product of good, old-fashioned British graft and nous. People in my area are proud of their high streets and want to see them do well. They want their local retail areas to be bustling and thriving. These measures are an enormous shot in the arm for those smaller businesses, which add not only vibrancy and character, but employment and economic opportunity to our local areas. I cannot praise them highly enough.

In conclusion, this is a Budget to help the people who drive the economy. It is a Budget for the businesses that help drive the economy. It offers dynamism to the economy. It will help deliver the growth we need to grow our revenues and our public services, and offer a future for our children which has jobs and is not shackled by an enormous debt left by the previous Government.