Chamber reaction to Chancellor’s Spring Budget

Author - Courtney Hiles

Date published:

John McCabe, chief executive of the North East Chamber of Commerce, said:

The announcement of a trailblazer devolution deal for our new North East Mayoral Combined Authority (NEMCA) is a massive boost for the region. It will be warmly welcomed by our members and demonstrates the government’s belief in the North East to get the job done.

This deeper, broader deal worth £4.2bn demonstrates the best of the North East in action – collaboration across geography, business and politics to deliver for everyone in our region. The shift in power from the national to the local will give stakeholders and businesses across the North East influence on key drivers of local growth, from regeneration and affordable housing to local transport, employment support and skills.

Our region’s local authority leaders and their teams have done a brilliant job in securing a game changing deal that recognises the unique assets and strengths of our great region. Strengthening Investment Zones across Teesside and the North of the region with transformative cultural and creative funding is a powerful example of this.

Today is a huge moment for the North East’s creative industries and for the region’s business landscape. Crown Works Studios will deliver jobs and opportunities on a scale not seen from a single development for very many years. I am sure I speak on behalf of businesses across the region when I say this is a most welcome development and a huge vote of confidence in the North East, something we will pay back in spades.

As the go to voice of business in the region, we look forward to playing a full and active role in the project’s success, helping to create a stronger, fairer North East.

There was also good news on the new 10 Year Long-term Plan for Towns funding for Darlington and the Green Industries Growth Accelerator which will support key priorities identified in our Local Skills Improvement Plans. With our partners at the British Chambers of Commerce, we were pleased to see the extension of full expensing for leased assets and the adjustments of the VAT threshold which will offer some support to SMEs.

While there was some very significant good news for the North East in this Budget, we are very concerned about the further cuts to a wide range of public services. On taxation, the Chancellor made much of his cut to National Insurance, however funding this while increasing the overall tax burden is counterproductive.

Download our full Budget Briefing document.

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