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Key points from Chancellor's Autumn Statement

posted 6 Dec 2013, 01:55 by Richard White   [ updated 26 May 2015, 04:51 ]
George Osborne delivered his Autumn Statement yesterday as the Independent Office for Budget Responsibility (the 'OBR' which produces forecasts for the government) has been taken by surprise by the speed at which the UK's recovery appears to be growing after years of recession and stagnation. 

There are fears that the growth may be fuelled by consumer spending and house price increases, but Mr Osborne has pointed to other evidence from the OBR that suggests that it expected "exports to pick up, investment to pick up, jobs to go on being created."

Key points from the Autumn Statement included:

  • The date when the state pension age rises to 68 will be brought forward to the mid-2030s - it had not been due to kick in until 2046 - and the age could rise to 69 by the late 2040s
  • An extra £1bn of cuts from the budgets of government departments for each of the next three years
  • Car tax discs to be scrapped and replaced by electronic vehicle excise duty system
  • Next year's planned 2p-a-litre fuel tax rise scrapped
  • Borrowing falls more than forecast and employment forecasts are revised up
  • Pensioners living abroad will have to prove they are alive more often in a crackdown on fraud and error
  • A major crackdown on tax evasion and avoidance aims to recoup £9bn over five years
  • Employer National Insurance contributions for under-21s earning less than £42,285 scrapped from April 2015
  • Tax breaks to encourage "fracking" for gas