Business News

Spending Review Offers Help To Business

Chancellor George Osborne unveiled his Spending Review on 20 October, setting out £81 billion in cuts over the next four years. Key points included:

  • about 490,000 public sector jobs are likely to be lost
  • there will be average 19 per cent four-year cut in government departmental budgets
  • local authority funding will be down by an average 7.25 per cent for each of the next four years
  • the structural deficit is to be eliminated by 2015
  • there will be £7 billion in additional welfare budget cuts
  • police funding is to be cut by four per cent a year
  • the English schools budget is to be protected
  • there will be £2 billion extra for social care
  • the NHS budget in England is to rise every year until 2015
  • the bank levy is to be made permanent.

The review also included a range of measures designed to support business and enterprise. These included:

Adult apprenticeships

Spending on new adult apprenticeships will be increased by £250 million a year by 2014-15.

Transport infrastructure

There will be significant investment in local and regional transport infrastructure including £14 billion of funding to Network Rail to support maintenance and investment; over £10 billion for maintenance and investment in key road and local transport schemes; Crossrail to go ahead; and £6 billion of capital expenditure for the London Underground network.

Low carbon economy

Measures will be introduced to encourage businesses to move to a low carbon economy, with £1 billion of funding to capitalise a UK-wide Green Investment Bank to fund low-carbon infrastructure and technologies.

Broadband

The government will incentivise the roll-out of broadband into areas where the private sector would not otherwise reach.

Regional growth

The Regional Growth Fund has been increased to £1.4 billion, up from the £1 billion announced in the June Budget. Local Enterprise Partnerships will provide strategic leadership in their areas, with further details to come.

LINK: The Spending Review