Liz Truss could slash personal taxes in ‘investment zones’ under economic plans

Credit: PA

Liz Truss is considering plans to slash personal taxes in addition to business levies in new “investment zones” as she seeks to set the wheels of her economic strategy in motion.

Those who live and work in the low-tax areas envisaged by the prime minister could see their own contributions cut, with the burden also lightened for firms – although no decisions have yet been made, it is understood.

The proposed “investment zones”, dubbed “full fat freeports”, were a staple of Ms Truss’s campaign for the Tory leadership.

Under her plan, she said these areas would benefit from a low-tax burden, reduced planning restrictions and regulations tailored on a case-by-case basis.

The Sun on Sunday reported that the new PM is now weighing up whether personal taxes could be cut for people working there.

With speculation building over the direction policy will take when politics returns to normal, it has also been suggested Ms Truss could lift the ban on new grammar schools within months.

Senior Tory MP Sir Graham Brady is planning to table an amendment to the Schools Bill in a move to bring about the change – and believes political conditions are promising, The Sunday Telegraph reports.

It comes as politics is set to return in full force following the Queen’s funeral, with ministers outlining support for businesses and plans to see the NHS through the winter, before the chancellor’s mini-budget rounds off the week.

Kwasi Kwarteng said the Government has acted to ‘stop businesses collapsing’ Credit: Kirsty O’Connor/PA

Normal activity in Westminster has been put on hold since the monarch’s death, with business in both Houses halted for the official period of mourning.

A scheduled meeting between Ms Truss and US President Joe Biden before the Queen's funeral has been cancelled, Downing Street confirmed. Instead, a "full bilateral meeting" between the PM and Mr Biden is now due to take place at the UN General Assembly in New York on Wednesday.

It is expected that MPs will return to the Commons on Wednesday, following the state funeral on Monday, where those who wish to do so can take a new oath or affirmation to the King.

The PA news agency understands that Business Secretary Jacob Rees-Mogg will also set out further details of the government’s plans to help firms through the energy crisis.

The new government has said it will cap energy bills at £2,500 from October, including a £400 rebate which will be paid in six instalments. It came after industry regulator Ofgem had originally said average bills were due to rise by 80% to £3,549. Households had already seen their energy costs surge by 54% after the price cap for an average home increased to £1,971 in April.

Later this week, Heath Secretary and Deputy Prime Minister Therese Coffey is expected to outline her vision to see the NHS through the winter months on Thursday.

Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng’s highly-anticipated mini-budget will then be delivered on Friday.

A parliamentary business paper suggests MPs will consider a motion on Thursday proposing that the Commons returns from the conference recess early, on October 11.

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