March 2016 Budget Comment from Richard Steer, Worldwide Chairman, Gleeds

There were some promising announcements, if they come to fruition. Spending on transport and infrastructure are positive for our industry but, as someone once said in a fit of desperation: “Show me the money!

All too often large infrastructure schemes are announced without real government funding behind them. HS3 for instance has been mentioned in 34 different speeches, sector specific comments or press releases by the government over the last two years. On the surface, our industry should welcome announcements like the reduction in corporation tax, lowering of business rates, stamp duty reduction for commercial property and dropping capital gains tax rates. But for me, it’s a budget with a number of unrealistic targets, like the optimistic surplus prediction, and it seems to me that it was more about politics than finance.