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Autumn Budget 2021: Key points and top takeaways

Written by: Emma Lunn
What has been revealed in chancellor Rishi Sunak’s Autumn Budget speech?

Sunak’s announcements included support for families, changes to the Universal Credit taper, an increase in the National Living Wage, the streamlining of alcohol duty, a cut in domestic air passenger duty (APD), and cuts to business rates

Here are the key points:

National Living Wage to rise

From 1 April 2022 the National Living Wage will increase by 6.6% to £9.50 an hour.

Young people and apprentices will also see pay increases as the National Minimum Wage rates will also increase next April.

Support for families

Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced the creation of a network of “family hubs” across England in the Budget.

Thousands of families are set to receive extra support as part of a £500m package from the government.

Air passenger duty (APD)

APD is charged per passenger flying from a British airport to both domestic and international destinations in bands that take account of distance and class of travel.

APD will be cut for passengers on domestic flights within the UK but there will be a new higher band for ‘ultra long-haul’ journeys.

Alcohol duty

In a major shake-up to the alcohol duty system, consumers will see lower taxes on prosecco, rose and draught beer and cider. Duty on sparkling wine will be levelled at the same rate as still wine.

Sunak also announced that a planned increase in duty on spirits, whisky, wine, cider and beer will be scrapped from midnight tonight, in a tax cut worth about £3bn.

Fuel duty

Fuel duty rates will be frozen UK-wide for the 12th consecutive year.

Business rates

Business rates will be slashed by 50% for hospitality, retail and leisure businesses, to recognise the difficulties these sectors faced in the pandemic.

Universal taper rate reduced

Workers claiming Universal Credit will be able to keep up to £1,000 more of their money each year after Sunak slashed the taper rate by 8%.

Cladding funding

A £5bn fund to remove unsafe cladding from the highest risk tower blocks will be partly funded by a residential property developers’ tax, which will be levied on developers with profits of more than £25m at a rate of 4%.

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