The headlines for Scottish business and Chancellor George Osborne’s third Budget focused heavily on the new tax measures introduced for the north sea oil and gas industry. However, there were other features of the statement which received praise from business leaders in the country.
One of the most exciting announcements will see the introduction of tax measures to support the video games industry. With Dundee a leading area for this, new jobs and better access to commercial finance in Scotland for businesses here is hoped for.
Further good news came for Dundee, along with Easter Ross and Irvine and Nigg, when it was announced that investment tax breaks would be introduced for these new enterprise areas too.
With Corporation Tax also cut by 2% to 24%, with a further fall taking it to 22% by 2014, investment throughout the UK is hoped to be improved.
Responding, the Scottish Chamber of Commerce said it was a largely positive budget for business in Scotland. Focusing on the progressive reduction in Corporation Tax, the SCC chief executive, Liz Cameron, said that they were very pleased that the cuts in Corporation Tax were being extended and accelerated.
Ms Cameron went on to welcome the other measures taken too, though some quarters suggested the measures did not go far enough. Most loudly spoken of all was Scottish Finance Secretary John Swinney, who felt there were no new resources or major initiatives introduced.
With personal allowances said to lift more than 70,000 Scottish residents out of the tax system and a baseline improvement for more than 2 million, many will be hoping the economy receives a timely boost.