Andrew Hodgson comments that "The Budget delivered a nod to the urgent need for improvements in regional infrastructure".
Andrew Hodgson, senior partner for KPMG in Bristol, comments on the Autumn Budget:
“The Budget delivered a nod to the urgent need for improvements in regional infrastructure today. Business leaders in Bristol and the South West will welcome Mr Hammond’s promise of a £1.7bn Transforming Cities Fund to get the economy firing in the regions by boosting infrastructure. With clear evidence that our infrastructure is stifling productivity and growth in the South West, the power to transform the region now lies in the hands of the Metro Mayor.
“This welcome news is further boosted by the investment in Welsh rail to improve journey times between Swansea and Cardiff; South Wales, Bristol and London.
“Focussing on tax, the Chancellor avoided introducing any further complexity into the tax system, and it is encouraging to see him use tax policy as a lever for growth and investment as we approach Brexit.
“There were measures to improve competitiveness and innovation and a commitment to continue with a competitive corporate tax environment – things business crave – but the sharp reduction in economic growth forecasts threatens to overshadow.
“The Chancellor’s announcement that he is doubling the Enterprise Investment Scheme allowance is a positive step in helping early-stage businesses attract investment and raise finance. Not only will this help to boost investment in startups, but it potentially plugs a funding gap if the European Investment Fund is no longer available when the UK leaves the EU.”
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