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Corporation tax cuts a budget bonus for small event agencies, says EVCOM

Industry welcomes George Osborne's budget announcement with good news for small companies and northern cities

Pictured: EVCOM board member Andrew Winterburn

EVCOM has welcomed a 17 per cent cut in corporation tax, adding the measures in George Osborne’s budget this week will help small agencies grow.

The Chancellor revealed his intention to slash corporation tax by 17 per cent by 2020 and Andrew Winterburn, board member at industry association EVCOM, says small agencies could be the biggest beneficiaries.

He said: “EVCOM’s thoughts on the recent budget reflect the sentiment that we have heard from other sources in terms of the fact there were no major surprises and it was overall a well balanced budget for businesses and individuals. 

The reduction in the corporation tax was good news for EVCOM members as it will allow businesses to invest profits back into the live and visual events arena. Plus we want to attract blue chip organisations to invest in the UK so this can only help to drive future growth and inward investment in the UK. 

A number of EVCOM’s members are either small businesses or self-employed so it was pleasing to see the government providing additional tax relief to this group in particular.”

Convention bureaux in northern England also expressed delight at the announcement of £60 million to develop plans for the High Speed 3 rail link between Leeds and Manchester by 2017 and £4m to upgrade the north's major rail stations.

Nick Brooks-Sykes, Marketing Manchester’s director of tourism, said: “We welcome the announcements in the budget that will improve Manchester’s transport infrastructure, including HS3, upgrades to the M62 and a trans-Pennine tunnel. They will join HS2 to make Manchester a true transport hub and a gateway to the north. 

“Our region’s economy is underpinned by its connectivity. Business visits and events are an integral part of this and this investment will improve capacity, reliability and ensure faster journeys. It will make it easier for both UK and international conference delegates to travel to Manchester and provide a welcome boost to the meetings, conferences and events sector.”

The Business Visits & Events Partnership (BVEP) echoed the reaction. Chair Michael Hirst said: “Overall, BVEP is supportive of the 2016 budget and is hopeful that it will benefit the further growth of events throughout the country. 

"In particular, we welcome the increased support for small businesses which are crucial to the events industry. A reduction in corporation tax and rates for small businesses will help to sustain their viability and keep the events industry growing and successful. 

"Improving rail connections will boost the success of important conference and event cities such as Manchester and Liverpool. The North will also benefit from planning approval for a new convention centre in Hull, following its role in hosting the festival of culture. No increase in fuel duty is also critical for the industry as both travellers and business commuters will see the benefit and transport costs will stay stable."

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