ALAN MAK: Autumn budget ensures Britain is fit for the future

Gavin Barwell, the government's new chief of staff, meets Jodie Reddin, a Havant constituent, with the town's MP Alan Mak last year
Gavin Barwell, the government's new chief of staff, meets Jodie Reddin, a Havant constituent, with the town's MP Alan Mak last year
Sgt Rupert Frere RLC - The Garrison Sergeant Major talks to a colleague ahead of the parade at the National Act of Remembrance at the Cenotaph in Whitehall

Poignant images of our armed forces at work

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The MP for Havant looks at what the latest budget means for the people of his constituency

The autumn budget announced by the chancellor last week, shows that the government is committed to helping working people across Havant.

The government is cutting taxes for working people, freezing fuel duty and delivering higher pay though the National Living Wage, as well as strong economic growth and high-quality jobs.

But while the major success story over the last seven years has been getting record numbers of people into employment, including ensuring that the numbers of people claiming unemployment benefit has fallen by more than half in our area, it is only right that the budget tackles some of the bigger issues facing the country today.

That includes a number of policies aimed at younger people, including making home ownership more affordable by abolishing stamp duty for most first time buyers, increasing the youth rate of the National Living Wage and the introduction of a new millennial railcard that could save 26 to 30-year-old passengers hundreds of pounds a year.

The prime minister’s new chief of staff, Gavin Barwell, had a chance to meet some of the people the government has helped into home ownership, such as Bedhampton mum Jodie Reddin, during a visit to Havant last year while he was housing minister.

By abolishing stamp duty, building more homes and furthering our commitment to Help to Buy, more local people like Jodie will be able to own their own home.

The budget also took bold steps to designed at improving Britain’s productivity and long-term growth, both here in Havant and across the country.

I am particularly pleased it included a commitment to increase the amount of money spent on scientific research and development from its current level of 1.7 per cent of national income to 2.4 per cent – the same level as most advanced economies. It’s something I’ve been campaigning for in Westminster over the last year.

Together with the modern Industrial Strategy announced this week, the budget shows that the government is focused on boosting living standards, which is key for every community locally.