Live blog: Budget 2011

Budget 2011

The Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, will be giving his Budget speech to the House of Commons on Wednesday 23 March.

Check back here then for our live blog of the speech from 12pm today and go to our news round-up page for all of the top stories and views on how this Budget will impact business and technology in the UK.

13:48 So that is the end of the response and the end of our live blog. We hope you found it useful. Make sure you check our news round up for all the main stories affecting technology and UK business.

13:47 Miliband concludes: "We needed a budget that changed the direction of economic policy... we needed a budget that changed course on cutting too far, too fast... it is not the Chancellor that is rescuing the country, it is the country that needs rescuing from this Chancellor."

13:43 On the cancelling of flexible working for parents with children between 16 and 18, Miliband said: "Flexible working is yet another broken promise from the broken promise Prime Minister."

13:39 Miliband strongly attacking Nick Clegg and the Lib Dems, saying no Lib Dem voters were voting for these reforms.

13:38 "His second budget tells the story of the failure of his first."

13:36 Miliband reminds us that unemployment has hit a 17 year high. Worrying for all.

13:33 Miliband is focusing on the fact our growth forecasts have worsened, which Osborne tried to blame on snow, whilst countries like Germany are on the rise.

13:32 Ed Miliband starts his response with "It's hurting but it isn't working." Lots of excitement and jeering.

13:30 "A Britain carried aloft by the march of the makers... and a fueling the economy." And that is Osborne done. What do you think?

13:29 Ah, reducing petrol by 1p on petrol from 6pm tonight. something to put in the piggy bank for an iPad 2!

13:26 Introduce a fair fuel stabliser. From tomorrow the supplement charge levied on oil and gas production will raise from 20 per cent to 32 per cent and this will raise 2 billion in revenue.

As a result we get a delay inflation rise due next week until next year, and delay April rise until next year to the following summer.

13:25 Osborne says the Government can't control the rising oil prices but can control the duty. Gosh, he is really dragging out this crowd pleaser...

13:22 Responsible Government listening and responding, apparently, when it comes to petrol duty...

13:18 The amount people can earn tax free will go up by 1,000. Goal of the coalition is anyone earning less than 10,000 won't have to pay NI. From April next year it will be all under 8,105.

13:17 HMRC estimate 14 billion was lost through tax avoidance and evasion in 2008, that is some big bucks!

13:16 If you leave 10 per cent of your estate to charity, 10 per cent comes off your inheritance tax. Seems like everyone benefits from that one.

13:12 Single tier state pension will be worth 140 per week, will take years to come into effect but idea is to simplify.

13:11 Work experience scheme will go up to 100,000 places over the next two years but Osborne admits less than 1 in 10 of businesses offer them.

There will also be funds for extra 40,000 apprenticeships.

13:10 Technical colleges to get more funding for apprenticeships in manufacturing. It will fund 12 new colleges and hopes to double that number to 24.

13:08 An economy where growth happens across the country and across all sectors. Now education...

13:07 21 Enterprise Zones will launch across the UK, 10 tomorrow and more in the summer. This will give discounted rates to companies, super-fast broadband and, thanks to reduced planning, will allow local governments to keep the cash it brings.

Areas for the centres will include Birmingham, Manchester, Leeds and Liverpool. Osborne has asked the Mayor of London to chose where one should be in the capital.

13:06 April small companies R&D tax credit will rise to 200 per cent and next year rise by 225 per cent.

13:05 Manufacturing is crucial to helping our economy improve again, says Osborne and the first technology manufacturing centre. Science is most important and 100 million to invest in new facilities in Cambridge, Norwich and Harwell.

12:59 In life sciences Osborne says they will "radically reduce approval times for clinical trials" and "improve IP regulation" for digital industries.

12:57 Oh dear, big jeers for rolling out "we are all in this together" again. How much have you got in the bank again George?

12:55 Start-up Britain to help people start and grow a business, set to launch next week by Cameron and Vince Cable. Look forward to seeing the details on this.

12:54 "Small businesses are innocent victims in credit crunch," says Osborne.

12:53 Businesses with fewer than 10 people and genuine start-ups free from domestic regulations. Would like to see which ones...

12:52 "Britain is open for business" exclaims Osborne. That is more positive sounding!

12:50 Corporation tax to lower by two per cent, 16 per cent lower than US and lowest in the G7.

12:48 Income tax and national insurance "could" merge it seems. Idea is to merge the two systems businesses use to get rid of complexity and reduce costs for employers. "Historic step" says Osborne but it is only a consultation...

12:46 Abolishes 43 'complex reliefs' and removes 100 pages from tax code to help simplify the tax system.

12:45 Four economic ambitions - competitive tax systems, best place in Europe to start a business, be a more balanced economy and have a more educated workforce.

12:44 "Our country has to compete if we are going to create jobs and growth" says Osborne as he again reiterates how far behind we have fallen behind other nations.

12:42 Borrowing to fund the deficit at 146 billion this year. The size of the task of repairing Britain is unchanged. Still pretty negative after a year in power.

12:40 Inflation to remain between four per cent and five per cent this year but supposedly down to 2.5 per cent next year.

12:38 Growth forecasts from the OBR is down to 1.7 per cent. Lots of jeers from the opposition blaming the cuts.

12:36 Publishing a "plan for growth" alongside the budget. "Britain has lost ground in the world's economy and needs to catch up." Wow, not being too positive about UK businesses so far!

12:35 "A budget for making things not making things up," says Osborne as he claims these policies will matter to real businesses and families.

12:34The difficult decisions from last year have brought economic stability. I would know companies who would beg to differ, along with those who agreed.

12:33 Last year was about rescuing, today is about ensuring jobs and growth in the future, claims Osborne.

12:32 Right, once the cheering and jeering calms down, the Budget speech will begin with George Osborne taking Cameron's place at the dispatch box. Expect a lot of proposals in a very short time.

12:27 Must be coming up to the last couple of questions of PMQs now. Come on George, we are waiting...

12:24 Cameron claims young people need to be more prepared for the world of work and the Government are making "bold and difficult reforms in education" to achieve this. Will we be seeing more of this in the budget?

12:17 Cameron says the budget will bring a "series of measures to fire up the private sector to make sure we have growth across the country." We will look forward to what the Chancellor has to say on this then!

12:10 Is it just me or is George Osborne looking a little green? Maybe he is just as nervous about his announcements as we are!

12:03 Welcome to the IT PRO live blog for this year's Budget speech from Chancellor George Osborne.

Just 30 minutes to go until it starts, but first David Cameron is taking on PMQs. Any early hints going to be dropped by the Prime Minister?


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