The Chancellor will deliver his Budget on Wednesday and he’s expected to focus on measures that will get various people back to work as part of a wider push to boost growth.

Matters such as energy bill prices, pensions and fuel prices are just a few thought to be mentioned in the Spring Budget when the Chancellor stands up in the Commons on Wednesday.

While nothing is confirmed so far, here’s a break-down of what is expected to be mentioned in the Budget.

What to expect in Hunt’s Budget on Wednesday

A number of factors are thought to be discussed in the Budget, let’s take a look.

Back to work

Basingstoke Gazette: Jeremy Hunt's Budget is expected to share plans on encouraging people back to workJeremy Hunt's Budget is expected to share plans on encouraging people back to work (Image: Canva)

A key part of Jeremy Hunt’s plan is expected to focus on efforts to encourage the over-50s, the long-term sick and disabled, and benefits claimants back into the workplace.

Details are thought to include the axing of the system used to assess eligibility for sickness benefits, paying parents on Universal Credit childcare support upfront and increasing the amount they can claim by several hundred pounds.

Childcare costs

It’s also thought there will be efforts to tackle expensive costs of childcare.

Mr Hunt is expected to announce a rise in the maximum universal credit childcare allowance by several hundred pounds.

Energy bills

Basingstoke Gazette: Energy bills are expected to be mentioned in the BudgetEnergy bills are expected to be mentioned in the Budget (Image: PA)

It’s thought that the Chancellor will cancel the planned £500 hike in average energy bills, in a move that would see bills for the average household staying at around £2,500, instead of going up to £3,000 as was previously announced.

The change was supposed to come into force from April 1 and in recent weeks the Treasury has come under increasing pressure to cancel it.

Fuel duty

The Chancellor has been urged to act to support motorists facing a 12p-per-litre hike in fuel duty in March by some Tory backbenchers.

A 23% increase in the duty is planned for this month but chancellors have repeatedly frozen the levy in the past.

Having said this, Mr Hunt has not confirmed what he will do so far.

Pre-payment meters

It’s thought the Chancellor will also end the so-called “prepayment premium” from July.

This is something the Treasury expects will save more than four million households £45 a year on their energy bills.


It has been reported that the Chancellor is considering increasing the £40,000 cap on tax-free annual pensions contributions.

This could come among a rise in the lifetime allowance (LTA) on tax-free pension savings.

Reports have also suggested that the UK state pension age could rise to 68 sooner than had been expected.


For months, the Treasury has been under pressure to boost the defence budget, as the war in Ukraine continues.

Rishi Sunak has promised an extra £5 billion for the military over two years, with an extra £1.98 billion this year and £2.97 billion next year for defence.

Pay deals

Strikes across transport, the NHS and other sectors have been taking place for months now and in recent weeks, there has been some hope that rows over pay could be brought to an end.

Unions representing ambulance workers, physiotherapists, nurses and midwives remain locked in talks with the Department of Health but Mr Hunt could potentially use his Budget speech to offer details of some sort of pay settlement to end the industrial action.


Plans to give the UK’s 363,000 international traders a more streamlined customs process could also be one of the measures Hunt announces.

It’s thought the changes will likely give traders six additional days to submit forms after border crossings, reducing admin burdens for business, as well as fewer authorisations and financial guarantees.

Tax cuts

So far, Jeremy Hunt has appeared to be resistant to calls from Conservative MPs who have been pushing for tax cuts.

Therefore, all eyes will be on Hunt to see if he offers any tax relief initiatives for businesses on Wednesday.

Cigarettes and Alcohol prices

Basingstoke Gazette: Alcohol and cigarette prices are expected to riseAlcohol and cigarette prices are expected to rise (Image: Canva)

Prices of cigarettes and alcohol are thought to be increased with a new system expected to come into place in the summer, The Mirror reports.

The system will see "drinks being taxed on how much alcohol they contain", according to the newspaper.

Reports suggest the price of a 20-pack of cigarettes will rise by £1.15, The Mirror reports.

Energy in homes

A cross-sector coalition of energy, fuel poverty and environmental groups is urging the Chancellor to invest billions in upgrading homes with insulation and heat pumps.

In a letter signed by National Energy Action, Age UK, Greenpeace UK and 20 other organisations, the group said investment in greener homes makes “economic sense” and will create warmer homes with lower bills while improving living conditions.

They're asking Jeremy Hunt to announce £5.3 billion for home insulation and £3.37 billion for heat pump installation, along with a further £6 billion a year for the next decade to help the poorest households.