Ruffley welcomes Autumn Statement's modest boost for Suffolk businesses

Thursday, 1 December, 2011

David Ruffley said: 'I welcome the Autumn Statement's modest boost for Suffolk businesses.

To get Suffolk moving, we need growing small businesses. So I am pleased there are measures in the Chancellor's statement that will help them. There is an extension of business rates relief that will benefit half a million businesses countrywide. There is the much-trumpeted credit easing programme that will reduce the rates of interest on business loans for companies with a turnover of less than £50m. And for investors to put money into businesses, there are tax reductions under the Enterprise Investment Scheme, while the threshold for capital gains tax will be frozen.

I wanted to see cuts in fuel duty. I supported a motion in the House of Commons two weeks ago to cut fuel duty because the cost of fuel at the pump is playing havoc with family finances, as well as that of local small businesses. The Chancellor has cancelled the pencilled-in 3p hike in January and nearly halved the projected increase next August. So these reductions are welcome.

The increase in the state pension will be £5.30, the biggest cash increase in recent memory. And I think the increase in the levy on banks will also be popular with the public- banks should make a bigger contribution to clearing up the mess their greedy executives have helped create.

I also called for bringing forward capital projects and the Chancellor announced over 30 schemes to upgrade rail and roads. The Chancellor's priority project in our area is targeted improvement to the Cambridge-Huntingdon stretch of the A14.

But if, as George Osborne warned, the Eurozone dives into serious recession as a result of the Euro's problems, then my view is he should reduce taxes to get the economy going. Let's hope the rest of Europe's economy does not implode.'