Everyone is looking for something positive from this year's Autumn Statement from the Chancellor. We all have felt the strain on our wallets when buying the weekly shopping or filling up our cars at the petrol pumps. Businesses are also looking for a light at the end of the tunnel, and the automotive industry is no different. With a push for all drivers to make the move to electric vehicles they are hoping that there will be some good news with improved incentives for new buyers of electric vehicles, as within the last year sales have fallen steadily with the reduction and removal of the grant schemes attached to buying EVs, both cars and vans and with the installation of home charging ports.
Investing in the Future
With the Autumn statement just announced, how do we benefit, and how can our business benefit? The Chancellor has made available £2 Billion to be invested into the zero emissions automotive sector, something that has been welcomed by Nissan and Toyota. This is part of a bigger package, of £4.5 billion, to be made available over 5 years to help attract investors in the manufacturing industry. This comes on the back of claims that there is a ‘gigafactory gap’ and this investment can help to ensure that we, as a country, are in a better position to produce our own batteries for new EVs and help to keep the costs down, which is in these economic times can only be a good thing.
And if you are wondering where all these new workers are going to come from to work in these zero emissions sectors, well, £50 million has been announced to be invested into apprenticeships that are directly linked to engineering and ‘other key growth sectors’, jobs and investment for future generations.
It was also announced that the business tax break ‘full expensing’ has been made permanent. This means that for every £1 spent on IT, machinery or equipment you can claim 25p back in corporation tax, this will boost some businesses and allow them to invest in themselves to be able to adapt to the changing business world.
More Money More Play
The National Minimum Wage is to be increased to £11.44 an hour from April 2024, this can be a significant amount to some people as it is set to include ages 21 and up, meaning that a 21-year-old could be 12.4% better off. More money in your pocket means that you might be able to finally upgrade your car, or even invest in a hybrid or electric vehicle.
For everyone over the age of 21 and already getting national minimum wage, this will mean that you will be getting £1.02 an hour more, over a 40-hour week that is £10.80 extra, certainly not to be sneezed at, and it will make a massive difference to some people's quality of life.
Traditionally, roles in the Motor Retail Industry, whist meeting minimum wage standards, were not the highest paid, and as the motor industry is important, not only for us as individuals to be able to travel around freely, but also as an industry to enable the government to meet their targets in electric vehicle sales and reduce carbon emissions.
With a cut in National Insurance contributions added to the minimum wage increase, then there should be more money left over at the end of each month to be able to spend on fun things, hopefully bringing joy and happiness to peoples lives.
Still a way to go
The Autumn budget statement contained over 100 statements, all of which will take time to comb through but, seeing that all aspects of industry and walks of life are touched shows just how much everyone, hopefully, will feel the benefit of these small tweaks, some are even starting earlier than next April which is traditionally when all these changes come into effect. With the Government investing in the automotive industry, in both small and large businesses, and helping train more apprentices, they are showing a commitment to the industry and helping to secure its future.