BusinessCompany NewsPre-Budget speech: Point-by-point

Pre-Budget speech: Point-by-point

In a speech running to just under 35 minutes the chancellor predicted healthy economic growth for the next two years, reporting the longest period of peacetime growth since 1870.

He also put inflation at just 2.3% for the years since 1997 and said unemployment was for the first time in 50 years lower than the UK’s major competitors – the euro area, Japan and America.

The speech included continued funding for the war in Iraq, tax concessions for amateur sports clubs, investment allowances, IAS assurances, money set aside for children and tax relief for oil exploration. The audit threshold was confirmed at £5.6m while a cap on council tax rises was also announced.

Pre-Budget speech 2003: Point-by-point

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