Chancellor Kwasi Kwaerteng unveils tax cuts

Chancellor Kwasi Kwaerteng hails the new era

An increase in National Insurance is reversed and low-tax investment zones will be set up across the UK. The cap on banker’s bonuses is lifted and a planned rise in corporation tax from 19 per cent to 25 per cent in April 2023 was scrapped.

The basic rate of income tax is cut to 19p and the 45 per cent top rate of tax for higher earners abolished – although this does not apply in Scotland.

Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng defends the measures saying they are “exactly the right thing” to do, although the financial markets reacted badly, with the pound falling to a fresh 37-year low against the dollar.

Rules around universal credit were tightened, by reducing benefits if people don’t fulfill job search commitments.

 The government was accused by Labour and some charities of prioritising the richest proportion of the population.