The Telegraph is reporting that Jeremy Hunt is considering an inheritance tax cut in the Autumn Statement, following positive projections about the state of the nation’s finances.
It can be seen here (subscription may be necessary) and goes on to say ‘ The Chancellor is open to bringing forward plans for non-inflationary tax cuts next month if independent figures show he has enough headroom.
It comes after the Office for Budget Responsibility calculated that a reversal in fortunes means the Treasury is now around £5.5 billion in the black.
The economic watchdog said a fall in the cost of government borrowing and a surge in tax takings is expected to boost the Exchequer’s coffers.
Mr Hunt has ruled out personal tax cuts in next month’s Autumn Statement (Nov 22nd) over fears that they would undermine efforts to bring down inflation.
But he is said to be open to measures that would not directly pump more money into the system, such as cutting inheritance tax, or stamp duty.
It is understood that he would only do so if the fiscal picture improves further in the coming weeks, with £5.5 billion not considered to be sufficient headroom.’
Adding ‘The Telegraph can reveal that backbenchers on the right of the party have submitted their own draft Autumn Statement to No 10 demanding tax cuts.
Drawn up by Sir John Redwood, who headed Margaret Thatcher’s policy unit, it urges ministers to crackdown on benefits and delay Net Zero spending.
He proposes that Mr Hunt should cut fuel duty by a further 5p and suspend VAT on energy bills while the price of a barrel of oil remains above $75.
The former cabinet minister suggested setting the threshold at $75 for a barrel of oil, meaning the cuts would be reversed if the price fell below that.
He also urged ministers to ease the burden on small businesses by raising the turnover level at which they begin paying VAT from £85,000 to £250,000.
On top of that he called for a further reduction in business rates and said burdensome tax rules that are hammering the self-employed should be reversed.
Mr Redwood said: “The budget should go for tax cuts and spending controls which boost growth, cut inflation and cut the need to borrow.”
His alternative Autumn Statement proposals were approved by a meeting of the European Research Group of MPs at a meeting in Westminster last week.
The Telegraph understands they were also sent to members of other caucuses within the Tory party, including the Common Sense grouping.