Osborne’s fourth Budget has coalition’s 413th hike in tax

 
Ben Southwood
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THE 2013 Budget contained chancellor George Osborne’s 413th tax rise since his first Budget, according to figures released by the TaxPayers’ Alliance (TPA) yesterday.

The campaigning group welcomed the swathe of tax freezes and cuts in the Budget, but warned that the government added 114 tax rises in the Budget, as against just 47 cuts – as part of a career total of 413 tax hikes and 166 tax cuts.

And at a post-Budget briefing, TPA boss Matt Elliott lamented the “state of permanent revolution” in the tax system that he said was part of the reason firms were so wary of investing.

Firms were asking “will my investment today be compromised by tax changes tomorrow?” Elliott said, driving them to hold back on investment projects.

His colleague Mike Denham, also speaking at the briefing, warned that with a deficit of £121bn in the last tax year, and a projected underlying deficit of £120.9bn this year and £120bn next year, we could slip into a norm of deficits well over £100bn.

Denham called for a big cut in public sector pay, such as the 10 per cent slashed in the 1930s.