Philip Hammond introduces 'digital services tax' targeting big tech

Shadow chancellor John McDonnell

Shadow chancellor John McDonnell

"But we put forward in the general election a fairer taxation system so that does mean that we will be asking the top 5% to pay a bit more in income tax and we will be rolling back numerous corporation tax cuts that have taken place, and we will be cracking down on tax evasion and tax avoidance".

He also said prisons, schools and local authorities would not have much to celebrate about the new budget and should be preparing for more hard years ahead. With numerous policies to help first-time buyers, lower incomes and housing, we look at how the new Budget will impact the SME marketing in the UK.

Opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn said austerity was not over, and the budget was a "broken promise" budget of "half measures and quick fixes while austerity grinds on".

Johnson said: "Suppose the public finance forecasts deteriorate significantly next year".

"Shared ownership has been around for nearly 40 years but many people remain unaware of it, or misunderstand how it works, so we hope the Chancellor's action will draw more attention to what is becoming the fourth mainstream housing tenure in the UK". Tory MSP Murdo Fraser said Mr Mackay was "the new Eeyore in town", complaining about being short-changed despite getting an extra £950m over three years.

Mr Hammond also announced that local authorities in England will get an extra £650 million of grant funding for 2019/20 to bolster social care. And the public finances are also forecast to continue improving.

Funnily enough, Hammond decided not to mention that part in his Budget speech, leaving journalists and others to dig around in the small print of the full Budget Red Book to find out that he was taking with one hand after giving with the other.

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"We really need to see a policy that allows students to sign on to two Global Positioning System - one at home and one where they study - to really see a difference", he said.

The Personal Allowance for Income Tax will increase from £11,850 to £12,500 in April 2019 with the higher rate tax threshold increasing from £46,350 to £50,000 at the same time. "What will he do then?" "It's surely borrowing that would take the strain", Johnson predicted.

"The chances of getting sizeable tax rises through parliament are next to nil. More likely he would just allow borrowing to persist at a higher level".

The Chancellor set out a five-year plan for departmental spending which will see Whitehall budgets rise by an average of 1.2% a year.

Meanwhile, public spending is set to remain on a relatively tight leash even after the government's so called "giveaway", with total expenditure estimated at £812.8 billion in 2018, before rising to £955.3 billion in 2023. Plus, the health service has old debts to pay, particularly for PFI contracts and other private endeavours.

Hammond said the tax would be "carefully created to ensure it is established tech giants - rather than our tech start-ups - that shoulder the burden of this new tax". He said that the United Kingdom had been leading attempts for digital tax reform to create a global agreement, but in the meantime, the digital services tax will fill that gap.

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