Chamber: “Statement shows Osborne is listening to us”


Boston Area Chamber of Commerce says the Autumn Statement shows George Osborne is listening to the needs of business.

Harry Drury, of the town’s chamber, said: “We are encouraged by the Government’s continued efforts to curb business rate increases and the announcement of a review into the future structure of Britain’s business rates system. This iniquitous tax is the highest in Europe and a drag anchor on investment and growth.”

He welcomed moves to promote start-up business loans and to abolish the National Insurance paid by employers for young apprentices.

Mr Drury added: “By improving in the skills of individuals and teams through apprenticeships, a stronger Lincolnshire economy can be built.

“We will continue to lobby on the behalf of local businesses, to ensure that the promises made today will become a reality and will deliver real change for Lincolnshire business.”

The statement saw the economy predicted to grow by 3 per cent in 2014, higher than the 2.7 per cent budget forecast but with borrowing set to be a higher-than-predicted £91.3 billion.

The statement also saw the confirmation of the cash for the Boston Barrier. The £73 million Government cash and timescale had already been agreed.

Boston and Skegness Conservative candidate Matt Warman said: “We all know how badly Boston was affected by the floods from which some are still picking up the pieces – pupils in my father-in-law’s classes at Boston Grammar School were unable to use the science labs, and there are still people whose homes are not yet back to what they once were.

“The government’s commitment to spend £73m on our flood defences is a hugely welcome step, only made possible by the growing economy secured by a Conservative-led government.”

Other measures included a freeze on fuel duty, ‘Google Tax’ on multinational firms moving profits abroad and a cut in air passenger duty for children.