Ceredigion’s Welsh Liberal Democrat MP Mark Williams has welcomed announcements made in today’s Autumn Statement to boost the economy, such as an increase to personal income allowance, reforms to stamp duty, and abolishing Employer National Insurance Contributions for apprentices aged under 25.
During today’s Autumn Statement, it was announced that the personal income tax allowance will be increased by £600, to £10,600 in April of next year. In Wales this increase will lift 20,000 people out of income tax altogether, and 1.1 million people will see an average real terms gain of £94.
Reform of the Stamp Duty Land Tax on purchases of residential property was also announced, meaning that rates will now apply to the portion of the purchase price within each band. Home buyers in Wales will benefit from these changes immediately, and will continue to do so until the Welsh Government takes over responsibility for equivalent powers in 2018. The government will also abolish Employer National Insurance Contributions for apprentices aged under 25. Policy relating to support for apprenticeships generally is devolved to the Welsh Government, however as National Insurance policy is not devolved, around 22,000 businesses in Wales employing apprentices will also benefit.
Commenting following the Autumn Statement Mark Williams said:
‘There are a number of good Liberal Democrat policies in this Autumn Statement which it is great to see implemented – in particular yet another increase in the personal income tax allowance. This has already a huge impact on the finances of many families, lifting 20,000 people in Wales out of income tax altogether with 1.1 million more people receiving another tax cut - and it is great that the allowance is being increased again.
‘I was also pleased to see reforms to stamp duty which will ease the burden on the vast majority of people looking to buy a home in Wales, and see support for businesses employing apprentices under 25, encouraging them to take on more young apprentices and helping young people get on the career ladder. Students wishing to continue their studies will also be able to benefit from the announcement that postgraduate students can now apply for students loans, making higher education more accessible for those who do not have access to funds.’