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I am worried about taxes – who should I vote for in the General Election?

A composite image featuring, left to right, Ed Davey, Carla Denyer, Rishi Sunak, Keir Starmer and Nigel Farage
Each party’s taxation plans explained (Picture: Metro/Getty)

One of the key battlegrounds in the 2024 General Election – and every general election for that matter – has been the issue of taxation.

Parties across the political spectrum are keen to set out their vision for the economy, with plans to cut and spend dominating the agenda.

Setting out their vision for a low-tax economy, the Conservatives have promised to continue cutting income tax and national insurance. Labour has pledged to freeze the ‘big three’ taxes during the next parliament, though other levies will be raised.

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With the issue looking set to dominate debate and discussion all the way up to polling day, here’s how each party plans to tax the economy should they end up in No.10:



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Conservatives’ tax policies

  • 2p cut to National Insurance
  • Scrap stamp duty for first-time buyers of properties up to £425,000
  • £17 billion worth of tax cuts
Rishi Sunak at the launch of the Conservative Party General Election manifesto in Towcester, Northamptonshire, on June 11, 2024. He speaks at a podium with a blue background
Rishi Sunak seeks to scrap national insurance and slash taxes (Picture: PA Wire)

Tax cuts appear to be at the heart of the Conservative manifesto, with Rishi Sunak telling BBC’s Nick Robinson during a Newsnight interview that they are ‘going to keep cutting people’s taxes’.

When asked if the upcoming Tory manifesto would contain even more tax cuts, Sunak said he wanted to build on the tax cuts ‘we have already started to deliver’.

Chancellor Jeremy Hunt previously said that a future Conservative government would not increase any rate of income tax or National Insurance for the duration of the next parliament.

Hunt also confirmed plans to cut a further 2p off National Insurance for 27 million people in the Spring Budget, and also expressed long-term interest in abolishing it when ‘it’s affordable’ to do so.

Another flagship policy for Tories is their plan to scrap stamp duty for first-time buyers of properties costing up to £425,000.

The plans are also not thought to include any further increase in inheritance tax.

Labour Party’s tax policies

  • No increase to income tax, national insurance or VAT
  • End tax breaks for private schools
  • A ‘windfall’ tax on energy giants
Labour Party leader Sir Keir Starmer and shadow chancellor Rachel Reeves during a visit to the Backstage Centre in Purfleet in May. They clap and smile
The Labour Party has promised not to raise income tax or VAT (Picture: PA Wire)

Labour pledged not to raise the ‘big three’ taxes of income tax, national insurance and VAT during the next parliament.

The party says its spending plans will be funded by closing tax loopholes for people with ‘non-dom’ status and cracking down on tax dodgers, claiming this will raise £5 billion a year.

Labour also claims they will invest £855 million into HMRC in order to boost tax income, which they claim will raise an additional £5.1 billion a year by the end of the next parliament.

However, the party is also freezing income tax thresholds 2028, which means many workers will move into higher tax bands and start paying more as a result.

It has also committed to ending VAT and tax exemption for private schools, and to keeping the current rate of corporation tax capped at 25%.

Labour has signalled a desire to lower taxes in the future but will only do so where clear plans can be made for the Treasury to recoup the losses elsewhere.

Liberal Democrats’ tax policies

  • Reform capital gains tax to close loopholes for the ultra-rich
  • Increase tax rate for big banks and tech/social media giants
  • Cut income tax by raising tax-free personal allowance
Liberal Democrat leader Ed Davey speaks to the media as he unveils the party's election campaign battle bus in May. He stands in front of supporters holding orange party signs
The Lib Dems seek to close loopholes for the ultra-rich (Picture: Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

The Lib Dems claim they will raise £27 billion by targeting banks and big businesses and closing tax loopholes used by wealthier individuals.

Sir Ed Davey has said his party would ‘reverse the tax cuts the Conservatives have given to big banks’, and increase tax on social media firms and tech giants from 2% to 6%.

They also seek to implement a 4% buyback scheme on FTSE-100 listed companies, which they claim will ‘incentivise productive investment, job creation and economic growth’.

The party says they want to ease the cost of living crisis by increasing working people’s tax-free allowance and implementing a windfall tax on energy firms.

The Green Party’s tax policies

  • Implement a ‘fair’ wealth tax which targets corporations and super-rich
  • Invest billions into health and social care
  • Large-scale green investment programme
Co-leader of the Green Party of England and Wales, Carla Denyer, speaks to the media during a press conference in central, London in February
The Greens seek to implement a wealth tax on the super-rich (Picture: PA Wire)

The Green Party claims it will raise £50 billion a year for the economy raising capital gains tax and introducing a new ‘wealth tax’ on the super rich.

High earners currently pay higher rates of income tax and already pay tax on income drawn from assets such as stocks, shares and property.

But the Greens say they will add a further 1% annual tax on all wealth above £10 million, increasing to 2% for total assets above £1 billion.

They claim this will raise £16bn a year from the 22,000 richest people in the country.

The party is also promising to cut VAT for the hospitality and arts sectors, and claim this will be funded by increasing taxes on the financial sector and private schools.

Green Party co-leader Carla Denyer said: ‘There is wealth in the UK. It is distributed unfairly. Our economy is failing because our wealth, rather than circulating and benefiting everybody, is held in the stagnant assets of the super-rich.   

‘Our wealth tax and wider tax proposals would also begin to tackle the desperate inequality that is a source of so many of our problems as a country. 

‘Taken together, we estimate that changes to Capital Gains Tax and National Insurance, alongside a new wealth tax, would raise over £50bn per year that would be available for the vital public investment our country is crying out for.’

Reform UK’s tax policies

  • Massive tax cuts for the wealthy
  • Raise the base rate of income tax from £12,570 to £20,000
  • Slash corporation tax and abolish inheritance tax for estates under £2,000,000
Nigel Farage speaking at a podium that reads 'Britain'
Reform UK seeks to attract disgruntled Tory voters (Picture: Getty)

Nigel Farage’s party have their sights firmly set on wooing disgruntled Tory voters with a set of radical tax policies.

Their plans include calls to raise the threshold required to charge the higher 40p rate of income tax from £50,000 to £70,000, as well as raising the basic taxation rate from £12,570 to £20,000.

The party also seeks to slash corporation tax and abolish inheritance tax for estates under £2,000,000.

Also on the cards are plans to scrap VAT on energy bills, lower fuel duty by 20p per litre and get rid of environmental levies.

The party says: ‘Higher growth rates are the only way to better wages and more tax revenues that can be invested in better healthcare and other public services.

‘Our bold economic vision frees up over 6 million people from paying Income Tax and frees up over 1.2 million small businesses and self-employed from paying Corporation Tax.

‘We would also aim to remove a raft of other stifling taxes in a responsible, timely way.’

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