Ippr co-director Lisa Harker says the raft of tax cuts announced by Chancellor Alistair Darling today means the tax burden “will be shifted away from those who can least afford to shoulder it”.
She says: “In tax terms this was the most redistributive budget statement of the last 30 years. By introducing a higher rate of tax, raising national insurance contributions, rebalancing and increasing personal tax allowances and enhancing child and pensioner benefits, the tax burden will be shifted away from those who can least afford to shoulder it.”
Harker also points out that the insulation measures are “good news” for people struggling to pay household energy bills.
She says: “”These changes are designed to protect the least well off during economic difficulties but whether they amount to a full prescription for a fairer and more sustainable future remains to be seen.”
It will also this winter and will help cut carbon emissions but the cap on Vehicle Excise Duty on the most polluting cars is a retrograde step.
However, Liberal Democrat shadow Chancellor Vince Cable said the reforms were merely a “figleaf” for the redistribution of wealth.