Tag Archives: HM Treasury

Tax-Free Childcare Opens To Children Under 9

Childcare scheme now available to parents of under 9s

HM Revenue & Customs

HM Revenue & Customs

In April 2017 HM Revenue and Customs started rolling out Tax-Free Childcare, which helps working parents with the cost of childcare with up to £2,000 of support per child per year, or £4,000 for disabled children.

Today, Tax-Free Childcare opens to parents whose youngest child is under 9, or who turns 9 today. The scheme will open to all remaining eligible families with children under 12 on 14 February 2018. This means all eligible parents will be able to apply for Tax-Free Childcare before the end of this financial year.

Parents, including the self-employed, can apply online for Tax-Free Childcare by visiting Childcare Choices. Parents can also access the government’s childcare calculator through Childcare Choices, which helps parents to choose which government childcare support is best for them.

Since opening the childcare service, through which parents apply for 30 hours free childcare and Tax-Free Childcare, more than 325,000 customers have successfully applied and are now using the service. Of these, more than 170,000 have a Tax-Free Childcare account.

The government is giving more help with the cost of childcare to working parents than ever before. It introduced Tax-Free Childcare in April 2017, and has doubled the free childcare available to working parents of 3 and 4 year olds to 30 hours a week for families in England. In 2019/20 the government will be spending around £6bn on childcare support – a record amount of support.

Card Surcharge Ban Means No More Nasty Surprises For Shoppers

Hidden charges for paying with a debit or credit card will be banned from today (13 January)

Credit Cards

Credit Cards

Hidden charges for paying with a debit or credit card will be banned from today (13 January), helping millions of UK consumers to avoid rip-off fees when spending their hard-earned money.

So-called ‘surcharging’ has become commonplace, particularly online, with many retailers hitting people with surprise charges just before they are about to make a purchase. Some retailers have been known to add charges which are far higher than it costs them to process a payment. It is estimated that surcharging cost Brits £166 million in 2015.

Today’s ban means that it will be unlawful for retailers to charge additional fees when someone uses a particular credit or debit card, or other payment systems like PayPal, to make a purchase. This will ensure consumers can be confident that there won’t be any nasty surprises, and they won’t be penalised for wanting to pay in a particular way.

Economic Secretary to the Treasury, John Glen said:

It’s completely unfair for someone to be hit by a hidden fee just before they are about to make a purchase, so by scrapping these rip-off charges we are helping to give power back to the consumer.

As we build a fairer society, this added transparency ensures buyers can make informed choices about how they spend their hard-earned money.

The new rules will be enforced by Trading Standards who will have the power to take civil enforcement action against traders who breach the regulations. It will also entitle customers to receive a refund of any unlawful surcharge they have paid and enable them, if necessary, to take legal action to recover any such surcharge.

The ban on credit and debit card surcharges is effective across the EU from Saturday 13th January 2018, and will apply to all purchases made where the banks of the consumer and retailer are within the EEA. In the vast majority of other circumstances surcharges are capped at the cost to the retailer for processing the payment. The UK Government took the decision to also include other payment methods such as PayPal in the ban to further protect consumers.

HM Treasury Welcomes New Ministerial Team

The Chancellor Philip Hammond has today (10 January 2018) welcomed the department’s new ministerial team

HM Treasury

HM Treasury

The new team at the Treasury is:

Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond, said:

Ensuring we have an economy fit for the future is vital to families up and down the country, so I’m delighted to be leading a team of ministers committed to creating a prosperous and inclusive economy where talent and hard work are rewarded and where everybody has the opportunity to shine.

I’d like to welcome Robert and John, and welcome back Liz and Mel. Together we will work tirelessly to deliver a truly global Britain.

Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Elizabeth Truss, said:

It’s fantastic to be reappointed at this vital time for our country. I’m looking forward to working with my Treasury and government colleagues. We will continue our focus on improving lives across the UK and backing the great businesses and people that drive Britain’s economy.

Financial Secretary to the Treasury and Paymaster General, Mel Stride, said:

A fair tax system is key to building a fairer society and I look forward to continuing our vital work to support families and businesses, crack down on avoidance and evasion, and ensure that our customs system works effectively when we leave the European Union.

Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, Robert Jenrick, said:

As Exchequer Secretary, I am delighted to carry on this government’s fantastic work to boost productivity, deliver better infrastructure and maximise the potential for our country.

Britain is a world leader in infrastructure delivering two of Europe’s largest projects, and our record investment will help ensure Britain is fit for the future.

Economic Secretary to the Treasury and City Minister, John Glen, said:

Britain is the financial services centre of the world and I am determined to maintain this leading position at what is a crucial period for the industry. The sector employs over a million people across the nation and its tax take is essential for helping to pay for our hospitals, roads, parks and schools.

I’m incredibly proud to be appointed City Minister and I’m looking forward to working with the industry to plot a course for a prosperous future.

Joint Article: A Deep And Special Partnership

A joint article by Philip Hammond and David Davis that originally appeared in Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung on 10 January 2018

(Credit: PA Images)

(Credit: PA Images)

By Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond and Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, David Davis

Today (10 January 2018) we’re both in Germany to highlight the important relationship that exists between our countries.

It’s a relationship built on shared interests and shared values, that has helped both our nations prosper and grow.

And while the UK will leave the EU next year, we can still look to the future with a shared vision — one that sees Germany, Britain and the EU continue to thrive, and our relationship remain strong and close.

Trade between the UK and EU 27 is worth €750 billion a year — and a quarter of EU exports to Britain, worth €113 billion, come from Germany, more than any other EU country.

Of course we understand that Germany and other EU countries want to protect the integrity of the single market, and that without all the obligations of EU membership third countries cannot have all the benefits.

Those priorities are not inconsistent with ours — a deep and special partnership with our closest trading partners and allies.

Our commitment to Europe’s security is unwavering, and we’ll seek to agree new arrangements that allow us to keep the close UK-EU cooperation to tackle the shared threats we face.

Meanwhile, there are still important choices to be made about how we find the right balance in Britain’s new relationship with the EU.

As two of Europe’s biggest economies, it makes no sense to either Germany or Britain to put in place unnecessary barriers to trade in goods and services that would only damage businesses and economic growth on both sides of the Channel.

So as Brexit talks now turn to trade, the UK will look to negotiate a new economic partnership with the EU – the most ambitious in the world – that recognises the extraordinary levels of interconnectedness and cooperation that already exist between us.

When we leave the European Union, we will leave the Customs Union and Single Market, but in agreeing a new model of cooperation, we should not restrict ourselves to models and deals that already exist.

Instead we should use the imagination and ingenuity that our two countries and the EU have shown in the past, to craft a bespoke solution that builds on our deeply integrated, unique starting point to maximise economic cooperation, while minimising additional friction.

The economic partnership should cover the length and breadth of our economies including the service industries — and financial services.

Because the 2008 Global Financial Crisis proved how fundamental financial services are to the real economy, and how easily contagion can spread from one economy to another without global and regional safeguards in place.

That is why the UK has worked with our partners in the EU to ensure we led the world in making the regulation and supervision of finance safer.

In particular, we’ve sought to ensure that financial authorities across the world can cooperate in rule-setting and supervising systemically important global firms, to make sure such a catastrophe doesn’t happen again.

That work shouldn’t end because the UK is leaving the EU. On the contrary, we must re-double our collective effort to ensure that we do not put that hard-earned financial stability at risk, by getting a deal that supports collaboration within the European banking sector, rather than forcing it to fragment.

For such a close trade partnership in goods and services to succeed, we will need to maintain our common principles – including our shared belief in high standards – and continue the intelligent cooperation of our regulators.

Because the trust we place in each others regulators, in a whole range of areas, has been built up over many years of cooperation and there’s no good reason why it should disappear after the UK leaves the EU.

We also propose to provide as much certainty to businesses throughout the EU as possible, through a time-limited implementation period after Britain leaves the EU.

During this period, we propose that access to one another’s markets will continue in its current form, using the EU’s existing rules, regulations and agencies.

That way, UK and European businesses have time to prepare for a single set of changes – once we know what our future trading partnership will look like.

This implementation period is clearly in the mutual interests of the UK, Germany, and the EU – that is why the December EU Council signalled its support for rapid progress on this agreement, which we should deliver at the March council.

So this week, we both take the message to German business leaders that agreeing the details of this period with the Commission is a major priority for the UK Government.

Brexit will inevitably mean a shift in the way UK and European companies do business together.

But with the next set of negotiations just around the corner, a bold, positive and exciting new chapter in our history together awaits.

We will continue to work closely together, to make sure we put in place a new relationship that works best for the UK, for Germany and for Europe.

David Belsham Re-Appointed To The Prudential Regulation Committee

The Chancellor Philip Hammond, announced the re-appointment of Prudential Regulation Committee external member David Belsham for an additional term of 3 years

HM Treasury

HM Treasury

Today (5 January 2018) the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond, announced the re-appointment of Prudential Regulation Committee (PRC) external member David Belsham for an additional term of three years. David Belsham’s second term on the PRC will begin on 1 May 2018 and end on 30 April 2021.

The Prudential Regulation Committee is responsible for the most important decisions of the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA), the UK’s micro-prudential regulator, which supervises banks, insurers and major investment firms.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond, said:

David Belsham has brought extensive experience and expertise to the Prudential Regulation Committee throughout his first term as external member, so I am very pleased to announce his re-appointment. I am confident his insights will continue to enhance stability and resilience in the UK’s financial sector.

David Belsham has been a member of the PRC and its predecessor, the PRABoard, since May 2015. He is a qualified actuary and spent his most of his career with British insurer Prudential, where he was the Executive Director for the UK and appointed actuary for Prudential’s UK and Europe insurance entities. He retired from Prudential in 2014.

Further Information
  • the PRA’s most important decisions are taken by the Prudential Regulation Committee, chaired by the Governor of the Bank of England. The Prudential Regulation Committee has a majority of external members, including the Chief Executive of the Financial Conduct Authority and six others selected for their experience and expertise in financial services
  • the government has today also announced the appointment of Charles Randell as Chair of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and Payment Systems Regulator (PSR). Mr Randell has resigned as an external member of the Prudential Regulation Committee. He will leave this position before joining the FCA and PSR as Chair. HM Treasury and the Bank of England will begin recruiting a successor soon.
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