Tories planning new tax cuts

By staff

The Conservatives are considering offering three different tax cut proposals deesigned to help those suffering from the effects of the credit crunch, the shadow chancellor has said.

George Osbourne told the Sunday Times, tax cuts would be funded by reductions in expenses and tax increases in other areas.

He told the newspaper that the Conservatives would soon announce proposals to reduce National Insurance contributions, to cut the rate of tax paid on savings and to raise the threshold at which pensioners pay taxes.

He also warned that the country was suffering with “high unemployment” and was on the verge of becoming the “sick man of Europe again”.

Mr Osborne said: “My priority is to try to reverse the increase in National Insurance because it is a tax that affects the vast majority of people in Britain. It is a tax on jobs at a time of high unemployment. It is a tax on incomes at a time when people will be under severe strain.”

The Conservatives have seen a double-digit lead over Labour in the polls being dramatically cut since the bailout of banks by the government in October, the announcement of a £20 billion fiscal stimulus by the prime minister and a 2.5 per cent cut in the rate of VAT.

A Labour spokesman dismissed the opposition’s proposals calling them “back-of-the-cigarette-packet plans” that would result in large cuts to public services.