UK Autumn Budget 2017 – old habits die hard

Dec 04, 2017

Some of the usual suspects were hit with duty increases on Budget day though fuel duty remains frozen for an eighth year in 2018-19 and duty rates on beer, (most) ciders, wine and spirits are to be frozen.  And the soft drinks levy (better known as the sugar tax) kicks in from 1 April 2018.  The legislation for this was contained in Finance Act 2017.

Before the next Budget, the government is also to review whether the existing fuel duty rates for alternatives to petrol and diesel are appropriate. In the meantime, the government will end the fuel duty escalator for LPG and the LPG rate will be frozen in 2018-19, alongside the main rate of fuel duty.

Alcohol duty rates and bands

Following the consultation launched at Spring Budget 2017, the government will introduce a new duty band for still cider and perry (from 6.9 percent to 7.5 percent alcohol by volume (“abv”)), to target white ciders.

Legislation will be brought forward in Finance Bill 2018-19, for implementation in 2019, to allow producers time to reformulate and lower their abv.

Tobacco duty rates

Duty rates on all tobacco products will increase by two percentage points above inflation until the end of this Parliament. Hand rolling tobacco will increase by an additional one percentage point. These changes came into effect from 6pm on 22 November 2017.  

Minimum Excise Tax

The minimum excise tax for cigarettes rose to be set at £280.15 per 1,000 cigarettes with effect from 6pm on 22 November 2017.