We have noted the increases in Social Insurance announced by the Government last Friday which are effective next month. These measures would normally be announced at the annual Budget session and the Government now it would appear is set on introducing cost increases by stealth ahead of the Budget so as to cowardly avoid having to debate them in Parliament.
GSD shadow minister for public finance, Roy Clinton,commented “In his 2016 Budget speech the Chief Minister stated that he would NOT increase social insurance contributions due to the seismic effect of Brexit and that he would observe the effects of the decision on business in Gibraltar before doing so and only if necessary. These measures will cost employers on average an extra £183.56 per annum per employee and employees will take home £121.68 on average less per year. Families and ordinary working people will be obviously worse off at a time when inflation is running at 2.5%. “Thus small businesses and employees across the board will feel the pinch” as the Chief Minister himself remarked in his budget debate contribution in 2010 during the last Social Insurance increase.
I invite the Chief Minister to answer his own question in 2010 namely: “if we are running surpluses, if we are in such good shape… tell us why it is that we need to further increase the cost of doing business in Gibraltar?” The small business sector is still reeling from the recent unpopular increase in business licencing fees and red tape, this latest additional cost to small businesses is the last thing they need ahead of Brexit.”