The Content Coms Budget Analysis: Osborne’s headline economic claims


In his speech to the Commons, George Osborne said:

UK economic growth today is; ‘Faster than any other major economy, faster than Germany, the US and France.’

Despite this, his words gave little or no hope to the UK’s burgeoning low carbon economy.

Crucially, Osborne’s budget announced the removal of the Climate Change Levy exemption for renewable electricity. He defended this by saying a long term framework for investment in renewables already exists.

The change, according to the Government, will correct an imbalance in the tax system by preventing taxpayers’ money benefitting renewable electricity generated overseas.

The Government argues this will help ensure support for low carbon generation provides better value for money for UK taxpayers.

In practical terms, there will be a transitional period for suppliers, from 1 August 2015, to claim the CCL exemption on any renewable electricity generated before that date.

The government will discuss the details of this transitional period with stakeholders over the summer and autumn, to determine an appropriate length.

More headline claims

  • The UK economy grew by 3% in 2014. Business investment is 31.9% higher than in 2010.
  • A new Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank will ‘connect Britain with the rest of the world.’ Depending on the details of this, it could be news for low carbon firms working with tech supplied to or from the Far East.
  • The UK recovery is ‘firmly entrenched,’ theoretically good news for low carbon business.
  • Britain will;  ‘Do the responsible thing; raising more money than it spends.’
  • ‘Britain has left the age of irreponsibility behind.’
  • A new fiscal charter to keep Britain in surplus is up for a Commons vote in the Autumn.
  • Average growth forecast per year to 2019: 2.4%

Osborne’s missing green words

His 2016 Budget Speech contained not a single mention of:

  • low carbon.
  • energy efficiency.
  • the Green Economy.

Osborne’s speech did not mention the word ‘environment’ even once. Let’s hope his Autumn statement is a little more tinged with green.