The UK Treasury chief has hinted at a squeeze on tax cuts and welfare benefits

The UK Treasury chief has hinted at a squeeze on tax cuts and welfare benefits

LONDON (APP) UK Treasury chief Jeremy Hunt says the government can now afford to cut some taxes. Inflation is falling. But with any cuts there will be a squeeze on welfare benefits.

British media reported that Hunt’s autumn budget statement on Wednesday would bring relief for businesses and wealthy property owners.

Hunt told the Daily Telegraph newspaper on Saturday that the British economy had “turned the corner.” “There is a way to reduce the tax burden, and a conservative government will take that way,” he said.

“Without prejudging the decisions that the prime minister and I make, this is a fall statement for growth. This is a turning point for the economy,” Hunt said.

But he warned broadcasters on Saturday that “there is no easy way to reduce the tax burden. We need to take hard decisions to reform the welfare state.”

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of Prime Minister Rishi Sank The Conservative government has struggled for the past year to shore up an economy battered by the economic crisis – caused by the pandemic, Brexit and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine – and Sinc’s predecessor, Liz Truss. was troubled by the tax reduction policies of .

The inflation rate reached 11 percent at the end of last year. It stood at 4.6 percent in October, still above the Bank of England’s 2 percent target. The economy is barely growing and millions are struggling to make ends meet. High food and energy bills.

With national elections due next year, the Conservatives are 15 to 20 points behind the opposition Labor Party in opinion polls.

The most likely tax cuts are cuts to corporation tax and cuts to inheritance tax, a measure that would help the wealthy. Individuals can currently pass property worth up to 500,000 pounds ($625,000) to children or grandchildren before it is taxed, meaning a couple can leave 1 million pounds tax-free. Only 4% of estates have to pay inheritance tax.

Hunt also said the government needed to reform the welfare system to get more people back into work. The government has announced it will increase penalties for people deemed fit to work but not looking for jobs, including removing their free prescriptions. Since the pandemic, the number of people out of the workforce for physical or mental health reasons has increased.

Ken Clarke, the former head of the Conservative Treasury, said that the inheritance tax cut “may appeal to the right of the Conservatives, but it exposes them to terrible criticism when inflation and conditions really hit the poorest people in this country.” Weakening.”

“I don’t believe the economic and financial condition of the country justifies it.”

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