Class 4 National Insurance Contributions - Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 4:08 pm on 15th March 2017.

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Photo of Lord Bilimoria Lord Bilimoria Crossbench 4:08 pm, 15th March 2017

Would the Minister agree that, while I welcome the fact that the Government have backed down on this, the reason given very clearly is on the spirit of a manifesto commitment not being broken? Well, the biggest manifesto commitment that has been broken is remaining in the single market. Are the Government now going to back-track on that? We shall wait and see.

The main reason why people—and when I say people I mean Members cross party in another place and here—objected to this increase in national insurance contributions for self-employed people affecting more than 2.5 million people is because the perception that it sends out is that the Government are going after and hitting the very people who take the risk to be self-employed and going against encouraging entrepreneurship. Would the Minister agree that the main role of government in this area is to encourage entrepreneurship, which means encouraging job creation, tax takes and growth, which will help to get rid of the deficit—not by hurting the very people who will create that growth?