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UK to ease property tax liabilities, cut VAT in hospitality sector temporarily


BRITISH Finance Minister Rishi Sunak plans to raise the property tax threshold to as high as £500,000 (S$870,326) and temporarily cut the value-added tax (VAT) in the hospitality sector, in measures to kickstart Britain's economy, The Times newspaper reported on Sunday.

Mr Sunak will reveal plans this week to lift the threshold at which people start paying stamp duty from £125,000 to as much as £500,000, in an attempt to exempt most homebuyers from paying any stamp duty, the newspaper said.

The report said that Mr Sunak's plans will also include a temporary VAT cut for pubs, restaurants and cafés to help to protect 2.4 million jobs in the hospitality sector.

Britain's hospitality sector has called for urgent support from Prime Minister Boris Johnson, with around 120 hospitality and tourism bosses signing an open letter asking for aid and investment, the BBC reported.

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Exemption in the stamp duty payment for the planned threshold is for a temporary period and could go up to a year, the report said, citing government sources.

Mr Sunak is set to make an announcement on Wednesday on the government's job support schemes and its plans to steer the world's fifth-biggest economy out of its Covid-19 lockdown slump, which caused a 20 per cent contraction in output in April. REUTERS

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