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Darling says he is on the side of the angels

The Government is to set out incentives in the Budget to help business angels invest in start-up companies.

At an EEF manufacturing event last week, Chancellor Alistair Darling said the Government would cut back on unnecessary regulation and continue to assess the case for reducing corporation tax.

He pledged his commitment to budding entrepreneurs in response to Conservative claims that tax and regulation systems are stifling new businesses.

Darling defended the Government’s tax regime, claiming that the main rate of corporation tax, which is set to fall from 30 per cent to 28 per cent in April, is the lowest in the G7.

He said his proposals to introduce a flat rate capital gains tax of 18 per cent are unpopular but he is “determined to simplify this tax and this rate is internationally competitive and is half of what it was 10 years ago”.

Darling highlighted the entrepreneurs’ relief he announced recently, which would see small businesses pay 10 per cent CGT for the first 1m of gains, claiming it would help 80,000 business owners and investors in 2009.

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