At last! UK Business can hold its head up around the World and say “we’re still very much open for business”! A big sign went up over the UK this week making it clear that “someone is doing something about it”!
Opponents of the Budget (from the Labour Opposition through the Unions to many in the media) always say “of course something must be done, BUT … “. Well, no “ifs” and no “buts” … we now have a five year plan to sort out the mess.
It struck me there were three levels of application in the Chancellor’s plans:-
- A clear and transparent plan, with measurable checks and signposts along the way. A 5-year Budget if ever there was one. The largest consequence for everyone (and especially for business and home-owners) is that interest rates will stay low, vital as a weak economy falters towards growth.
- Business has been “set free” to drag the UK Economy out of the mess, create the jobs and generate the taxes. Low rates of corporation tax, no insidious Employers’ National Insurance Tax on the first ten jobs created in a small business (why the tax on jobs exists at all is quite beyond me) and help in many ways North of Watford all means that Business must now rise to the challenge and do it for the Country … and themselves.
- At last … a huge call to the Public Sector to wake up and smell the coffee! They are not special. they are not different. At a time when even the Queen, in not having any increase in the Civil List (again!), is saying “One is in this together” then those (by no means all, to be fair) in the Public Sector who have behaved as if they are immune from the ravages that have landed over the past three years on the sector of the Economy (the Private Sector) that pays them, have now got to cut their suit according to what we as a Nation can afford, not what we would like! The low paid in the Public Sector will still get a pay rise (more than so many low-paid in the Private Sector have had over the recent past) and pensioners will be sheltered. The Unions may bleat, the left-wing may holler. but at last we are being seen to do something about it!
This first Budget was the only one to do it all in … leave it a while and the reforming zeal of the Coalition may lose its sharpness and elections gather on the horizon when turkeys and Christmas come to mind.
So Mr Osborne … you now have the biggest challenge of all. You see; I learned a long time ago: Don’t listen to what Politicians say, watch what they do! So. with what I perceive is a real communal will in the Country for this Budget strategy to succeed, the Coalition must now deliver. Weather the strikes, deny the doom-mongers, take on the ditherers … and (if I may steal a phrase from a well-known commercial) … Just Do It!!