Phillip Hammond's #Budget2017. What’s in it for small businesses and startups?

Here are the key points for those of you too busy growing or launching a business to sit through an hour of bad jokes, and all the boring commentary from the MP's!

The underlying message is that the UK economy as a whole is weaker than thought back in March. But the government have announced a few schemes to boost entrepreneurship and help start-ups to boost productivity.

The state of the economy

  • Growth forecast for 2017 downgraded from 2% to 1.5%
  • GDP downgraded to 1.4%, 1.3% and 1.5% in subsequent years before rising to 1.6% in 2021-22
  • Productivity growth and business investment also revised down.


  • VAT threshold for small business to remain at £85,000 for two years. Helps to keep a huge chunk of small businesses out of VAT.
  • £500m for 5G mobile networks, fibre broadband and artificial intelligence.
  • £540m to support the growth of electric cars, including more charging points.
  • A further £2.3bn allocated for investment in research and development.
  • Rises in business rates to be pegged to CPI measure of inflation, not RPI.
  • Staircase tax: businesses hit will have original bill reinstated.
  • Income tax to be applied from April 2019 on digital economy royalties relating to UK sales which are paid to a low-tax jurisdiction.
  • Does your startup hire someone on minimum wage? The “national living wage”. From April will rise 4.4% from £7.50 an hour to £7.83


  • £3bn to be set aside over next two years to prepare UK for every possible outcome as it leaves.

Alcohol, tobacco, gambling and fuel

  • Tobacco will rise by 2% above Retail Price Index (RPI) inflation while the minimum duty on cigarettes introduced in March will also rise, as will duty on hand-rolled tobacco.
  • Duty on beer, wine, spirits and most ciders will be frozen.
  • Vehicle excise duty for diesel cars that do not meet latest standards to rise by one band in April 2018
  • Tax hike will not apply to van owners.
  • Existing diesel supplement in company car tax to rise by 1%.
  • Proceeds to fund a new £220m clean air fund.
  • Fuel duty rise for petrol and diesel cars scheduled for April 2018 scrapped.

Personal taxation

  • Tax-free personal allowance to rise to £11,850 in April 2018
  • Higher-rate tax threshold to increase to £46,350
  • Short-haul air passenger duty rates and long-haul economy rates to be frozen, paid for by an increase on premium-class tickets and on private jets

Health and social care

  • £10bn capital investment fund for hospitals


  • Long-term goal to build 300,000 new homes a year by the mid-2020s
  • £44bn in government support, including loan guarantees, to boost construction skills
  • Review to look at ways of speeding up planning permission for new developments.
  • £28m for Kensington and Chelsea council to provide counselling services and mental health support for victims of the Grenfell fire and for regeneration of surrounding area.
  • One million new homes on the Cambridge-Milton Keynes-Oxford corridor by 2050.


  • Helping to create the tech founders of the future? 8,000 new computer science teachers to be recruited at cost of £84m.
  • Second devolution deal for the West Midlands.
  • £1.7bn transport fund for city regions.
  • £2bn for Scottish government, £1.2bn for Welsh government and £650m for Northern Ireland executive.

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