Chancellor Philip Hammond reaffirmed the government’s commitment to innovation and improving efficiency with a raft of new measures.
The £23 billion infrastructure investment fund announced last autumn will be extended for another year and raised to £31 billion.
On top of this a further £2.3 billion is to be invested in research & development (R&D) and the R&D tax credit for companies will be raised by 12%.
‘A new tech business is founded in Britain every hour,’ Hammond said.
‘Those who underestimate Britain do so at their peril.’
Although welcoming the increased tax break, Kingston Smith tax partner Graham Morgan described the move as 'modest'.
'The announced increase in the R&D Expenditure Credit from 11% to 12% will mean that companies claiming under this scheme will get back £9.72 for every £100 spent on R&D instead of the existing £8.91, a 9% increase,' he said.
'This is a welcome, if modest, increase but the SME businesses are left out of the chancellor’s generosity as the SME rates are unchanged.
Hammond also said that the government will also invest over £500 million for a range of initiatives from AI, 5G and full fibre broadband.
The chancellor also said it will back the growth in usage of electric cars with a new £400 million charging infrastructure fund, along with a £100 extension of the Plug-In-Car Grant and £40 million in charging R&D.