When news happens text pix and video to 80360. Start your message with BE then leave a space.
Budget 2013: I'll tackle the economy's problems head on, says Osborne
9:26am Wednesday 20th March 2013 in News
CHANCELLOR George Osborne this morning promised “a Budget that tackles the economy's problems head-on, helping those who want to work hard and get on”.
His pledge came in the Chancellor's first message on Twitter, issued on the morning of a Budget day taking place against a grim economic backdrop, with Labour pressing him to admit his austerity programme has failed.
Today I'll present a Budget that tackles the economy's problems head on helping those who want to work hard & get on twitter.com/George_Osborne…— George Osborne (@George_Osborne) March 20, 2013
Mr Osborne is expected to offer help to hard-pressed families by speeding up progress towards a £10,000 tax-free personal allowance.
Expectations are high that he will delay or even scrap a fuel duty hike scheduled for the autumn and abolish the so-called beer tax escalator.
But the financial package is set to be dominated by questions of how to revive the ailing economy, with the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) likely to downgrade growth forecasts and predict sharply higher borrowing.
Mr Osborne has already signalled that a fresh round of cuts will be imposed on some Whitehall departments over the next two years to free up £2.5 billion for extra spending on housing and other infrastructure.
Today Labour leader Ed Miliband said it was time for the Chancellor to admit that a “change of course” is needed to inject growth into the economy.
“What I want to hear from the Chancellor today is a willingness to change course, not more of the same.
“His economic plan is failing. It's failing Britain's businesses and Britain's families,” he said.
Mike Clark, Dorset Chamber of Commerce and Industry president, said: “As DCCI President I would really like to see the Chancellor recognise the work of the chamber movement by increasing the involvement of the network in services currently run through the public sector and from a business perspective, reduce employers' NI, the tax on jobs.”
Steve Bennett, Poole-based Wyvern Cargo's finance director, said that measures to stimulate investment by industry in the industrial infrastructure were key to Britain's economic recovery.
Follow our live coverage from 11am, when we will be reporting the speech as it happens and getting reaction from the Dorset public and businesses.