Autumn statement 2023: What it means for electricians and small businesses

Autumn statement 2023: What it means for electricians and small businesses  

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Debbie Shields | Communications Manager

Autumn statement 2023: What it means for electricians and small businesses  

The government has announced its plans for the economy and public spending for the next year. The autumn statement for 2023 contains various changes. Here we summarise how this impacts you.  

Self-employment and small businesses  

The government will cut down self-employment taxes and reduce the main rate of class 4 self-employed national insurance contributions from 9% to 8%. As a result, you will pay less tax on your profits.  

There are also plans to rewrite the guidance on the tax deductibility of training costs for sole traders and those who are self-employed. This means you can claim more expenses for training courses and qualifications relevant to your trade.  

These changes are expected to benefit over 4 million self-employed workers and small businesses across the UK.  

Skills and innovation  

The government has pledged to invest in skills and innovation. This includes a £50 million investment in a pilot scheme, which will encourage training and apprenticeships in growth sectors (such as green industries), and remove barriers to entry for high-value apprenticeships. This will create more opportunities for you and your staff to upskill, allowing you to access new markets and customers that demand green energy solutions.  

£145 million will be invested in business innovation. This includes £20 million for productivity and decarbonisation of foundation industries, £50 million for battery innovation, £50 million for investment in catapults, and £25 million for innovation in critical technologies. This means you will have more support and funding when adopting new technologies.  

These investments are part of the government’s ambition to make the UK a global leader in innovation and to reach net zero by 2050.  

Green incentives  

Restrictions will be eased on installing heat pumps near property boundaries in England, which could help businesses reduce carbon emissions and save on energy bills. The government will also provide grants and loans to help businesses install heat pumps.  

There will be an expansion of VAT relief for energy-saving materials, such as water-source heat pumps, for both charitable and non-charitable buildings. This will apply across the UK from February 2024. This means that you will pay less VAT (5% instead of 20%) when you buy or install energy-saving materials for yourself or your customers, making them more affordable and attractive.  

Plans are also in place to reform the grid connection process. This will make it faster and easier for projects to connect to the electricity grid, including freeing up over 100GW of capacity. This means that you will have less hassle and delay when you need to connect your electrical installations to the grid and that the grid will be able to accommodate more renewable energy sources.  

The government will explore how to improve the infrastructure and technology of the electricity network, which could benefit electricians and other tradespeople who rely on it. This will be done through a commissioned study on how to make the electricity distribution network fit for net zero, which could lead to more efficient and reliable power supply for businesses.  

These incentives are part of the government’s commitment to tackle climate change and to support the transition to a low-carbon economy. 

To read the full statement visit Autumn Statement 2023 - GOV.UK (