5th February 2019

Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond, has revealed that the second annual Spring Statement will be held on Wednesday, 13th March 2019.

The announcement means that the Statement, which the Government uses to respond to forecasts made by the Office for Budget Responsibility, is scheduled to take place just 16 days before the United Kingdom is due to leave the European Union on Friday, 29th March.

In agreement with the Chancellor’s intentions as described in his 2016 Statement, there is currently only one full fiscal event timetabled for this year – the Autumn Budget. This move means that tax and spending changes should only take place once throughout the year.

However, in the event of a ‘no-deal’ Brexit, many expect him to deliver an emergency Budget. This follows his previous Autumn speech, in which Hammond asserted that he reserved the right to upgrade the Spring Statement to a full “fiscal event,” should major economic changes occur during the year.

“In normal circumstances, the Spring Statement should not herald any changes to tax and spending,” comments UNW Tax Partner, Charles Linaker. “But in the circumstances of an imminent and uncertain Brexit, who knows what’s going to happen?”

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