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Poor People

Volume 173: debated on Wednesday 6 June 1990

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To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what fiscal policies the Government have to protect the poorest in society.

The main objective of the Government's fiscal policies is to improve the performance of the economy, which benefits everybody, including the poorest. Since 1979, the basic rate of income tax has been cut from 33 to 25 per cent., benefiting all taxpayers; the main personal allowances have been increased by about 25 per cent. in real terms, taking about 2 million individuals out of tax, compared to the 1978–79 regime indexed for inflation; and the structure of national insurance contributions has been reformed, benefiting in particular the low paid.