But to what extent did he succeed? As in previous years, the Government’s commitment to reducing the deficit meant the Budget had to be fiscally neutral, with any additional spending offset by cuts elsewhere. As well as the headline grabbing tax initiatives, it was good to see that cities – the drivers of the UK economy – were well represented, with announcements on devolution of powers, borrowing and infrastructure all affecting cities. Other measures, such as support for enterprise and access to finance, will also affect city economies.
This note reviews what the Budget 2012 will mean for the UK’s cities. It argues that there are some positive measures, but that there are missed opportunities for more place-responsive policies, in particular on youth unemployment, skills, job creation and enterprise.
Our briefing outlines the main implications for cities, including