Hammond faces backbench battle after ditching manifesto tax pledge

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Treasury figures showed the increase in so-called Class 4 contributions from 9% to 11% over two years, would raise an additional £2 billion over two years.

Therefore, small businesses with a couple of employees, and individuals such as freelancers and contractors who run their own limited companies, will feel the pinch more than others.

While someone who earns £25,000 a year, after expenses, is £182 a year worse off from April 2019 and a self-employed worker who earns £50,000 a year after taxes will be down by about £722 a year.

Hammond also said that the British economy is expected to grow 2 percent this year, and that public borrowing will be 16.4 billion pounds (20 billion US dollars) lower than expected at the time of the last economic statement, in the autumn.

Mr Hammond targeted tax rises on the self-employed, company owners and investors and provided emergency funds for social care as he set out to provide a "strong and stable platform" for Britain's negotiations to leave the European Union, due to start later this month.

More news and reaction soon... However, Johnson and his team say that the rights are now so similar that there ought to be a similar tax rate. The self-employed still lack benefits like sick pay or maternity pay.

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Workers in North Norfolk could be the hardest hit by the chancellor's controversial National Insurance Contribution revenue raiser.

And he confirmed the introduction of a new regime of so-called T-levels, the flagship measure in an overhaul of post-16 education he said would put technical skills on a par with academic qualifications, and make sure students were "genuinely work-ready".

My only concern is that should United Kingdom activity fall short of the OBR's 1.8 per cent projected annual pace over the next five years, the chancellor's £26bn headroom could disappear very quickly.

Mr Hammond also announced the introduction of T-Levels, which will replace over 13,000 qualifications across the United Kingdom with 15 career route focused courses for technical disciplines.

"It's great to see the focus on long term planning and consultation".

Taken in conjunction with another forthcoming tweak to NICs, 1.6m people will pay more.

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"Technical education has been a longstanding weakness in the United Kingdom skills system".

Nicknamed "Spreadsheet Phil" for his unflashy approach to running the economy, Hammond wants to build up a reserve fund in case he needs to help Britain's economy through a Brexit slowdown ahead.

'It will ensure that support for investors is more effectively targeted, and make the total amount of income they can receive tax-free fairer and more affordable.

However many small businesses face a rates hike of up to 400% a month from April.

Mark Dawe, AELP chief executive, also welcomed Mr Hammond's "recognition of the importance of skills for young people in today's budget, the measures to boost technical education and his statement that the government's 3 million apprenticeships target remains a key plank of its skills policy".

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