National Insurance Tax Rise 'Going Ahead' In April, Says Minister

·2 min read
(Photo: Peter Dazeley via Getty Images)
(Photo: Peter Dazeley via Getty Images)

The planned hike in national insurance is “going ahead”, a minister has said.

It has been reported Boris Johnson is considering delaying the rise for a year in order to appease Tory backbenchers who are opposed to the plan.

But speaking to Sky News on Friday morning, technology minister Chris Philp said: “Yes, it is going ahead.

“It was approved by the whole cabinet, it was passed by parliament with a significant majority, and the money is needed to fund the NHS, which I think is something that is a national priority,” he said.

He added: “We need to put that money in to make sure the NHS has the resources it needs to recover after the pandemic, and this is a proportionate way of finding that money.”

In a separate interview with LBC, Philp also denied suggestions the tax rise would be ditched. “No, the plan is to proceed as intended,” he said.

The prime minister, under intense pressure over the partygate allegations is said to be offering “red meat” policies to Conservative MPs in the hope they will not topple him.

Defence minister James Heappey told BBC’s Question Time: “The top of the government is in listening mode at the moment.

In what was seen as a hint the national insurance rise could be scrapped, he added: “There are plenty of people that are on good salaries that are starting to worry about how they’re going to make ends meet and the government is seeking to address that.

“We’re going to need to do a lot over the next few years to help people with this.”

According to The Times, Johnson was considering “back-sliding” on the tax rise.

“It has never been popular among the right of the party and it’s that group Boris is most worried about,” a source told the paper.

This article originally appeared on HuffPost UK and has been updated.

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