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Spring Statement 2018: how contractors will fare

Contractors will be hoping that predictions of a non-event come true when the first Spring Statement is published in 13 days’ time – So the government will publish what its calling the inaugural ‘Spring Statement’ on Tuesday March 13th 2018.

Just to recap, under changes introduced by chancellor Philip Hammond there is now only one major fiscal event a year — the Budget in the autumn.
The Treasury is keen to emphasise that, under the new fiscal calendar, the Spring Statement won’t be a mini-Budget. It’s even said that big policy announcements aren’t the intention.
It has also pointed out that switching the Budget from spring to autumn means tax changes will be announced well in advance of the start of the tax year, allowing sufficient time for consultation and awareness-raising.

A simpler system?

Underlining the break with tradition (or at least an intention to), a Treasury spokesman recently told reporters that the Spring Statement will last no more than 20 minutes, with “no red box, no official document, no spending increases (and) no tax changes.”
The fact that the statement will be delivered on a Tuesday, rather than in the primetime slot just after Prime Minister’s Questions on a Wednesday, will also give it a lower profile.
As Mr Hammond put it when explaining the thinking behind the change back in 2016, “no other major economy makes hundreds of tax changes twice a year, and neither should we.”

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