If we look beyond the current legislation to devolve corporation tax to Northern Ireland it was a positive budget from a business perspective. It will enable business owners to invest in apprentices and under 21s knowing they will not be liable for national insurance contributions. Tax relief for the creative industries will increase further, which will be welcome news for the many large scale productions that Northern Ireland hosts. The abolishment of the personal tax return will also be welcome by many individuals but they will need advice to avoid falling foul of thousands of pages of legislation.
One downside was the creation of more UK enterprise zones. Not good news for Northern Ireland as we were aiming to capitalise on that status for the region. Corporation tax devolution to Stormont remains the significant step and key to creating large scale employment and sustained economic growth for Northern Ireland.