CHANCELLOR Jeremy Hunt has said “we’re all going to be paying a bit more tax” ahead of the autumn Budget on November 17.

Hunt will make his statement outlining financial measures to help tackle inflation and rising energy prices this Thursday. 

There has been intense speculation on what his budget will contain. However, Hunt said it is “not just bad news”, claiming he wants to set out a plan to “show the way through” the difficulties the UK is facing. 

Regarding who will be required to bear the brunt of extra costs, he said the government will be asking “everyone for sacrifices” but said the UK is a “compassionate” country insisting, “there’s only so much you can ask from people on the very lowest incomes”. 

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Asked if he will be paying more tax after next week, Hunt told Sky News: “We’re all going to be paying a bit more tax, I’m afraid […] but it’s not just going to be bad news. 

“I think what people recognise is that if you want to give people confidence about the future, you have to be honest about the present. And you have to have a plan. 

“This will be a plan to help bring down inflation, help control high energy prices and also get our way back to growing healthily, which is what we need so much.”

Hunt was brought in as Chancellor in the wake of the economic turmoil caused by Liz Truss and Kwasi Kwarteng’s mini-Budget.

On Sky News he was presented with an interview he gave during his own campaign in which he stressed the need to “go for growth” and said, “no Conservative should raise taxes”. 

He said: “(The) overall point I was making is something that I hope you’ll see reflected in the decisions made on Thursday, which is to try and protect the things that really matter for economic growth.

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“But the world has changed since the summer. We’ve had a very big deterioration in public finances, in the international situation.”

He added: “What I would say is the Jeremy Hunt you saw there saying ‘let’s be the most competitive place for businesses anywhere in Europe’ is the same Jeremy Hunt that is now Chancellor of the Exchequer, and we need to absolutely protect the things that matter for our long-term growth.”

Elsewhere, the SNP have ramped up the pressure on the Tory government to use the upcoming autumn budget to expand the windfall tax

SNP shadow chancellor Alison Thewliss said the Chancellor's budget needs to support the most vulnerable. 

She said: “A return to Tory Austerity 2.0 would be a hammer blow for millions of people across Scotland and the UK who are struggling to make ends meet.

“The Chancellor should be preparing a Budget that strengthens support to put money into people’s pockets and helps to properly tackle the Tory-made cost of living crisis - instead it's clear he is intent on ushering in a new era of Tory austerity by attempting to balance the books on the backs of some of the most vulnerable in society.

“The Chancellor must rethink and reject those plans and look to deliver real support as a bitter winter approaches for many - including protecting the pensions triple lock, raising benefits in line with inflation, expanding the windfall tax, and introducing a tax on share buybacks and scrapping the controversial non-dom status."

Hunt also said he refused to accept the premise that “Brexit will make us poorer”. 

Speaking on BBC’s Sunday With Laura Kuenssberg, the Chancellor was shown a graph which showed the UK economy’s falling behind others across the globe. 

He said: “I believe we can make a tremendous success of it (Brexit), but it’s not going to happen automatically. What you’ll hear on Thursday is some of the ways that I think we can.”

Asked if he denies Brexit has slowed economic growth at home, Hunt said: “What I don’t accept is the premise that Brexit will make us poorer.

“I don’t deny there are costs to a decision like Brexit, but there are also opportunities, and you have to see it in the round.

“Literally within months of formally leaving the EU we had a once-in-a-century pandemic, which has meant the process of outlining what the opportunities are has taken longer, but I think we need to do that now.”

Pressed on whether he thinks that is partly why the country is “behind” some other economies, he said: “I don’t think that’s the biggest issue.”

The Scottish Greens also hit out at Hunt's comments, saying the Tory government's aren't protecting people from the party's economic mistakes. 

A spokesperson for the party said: “This Tory government blew up the economy by pursuing a hard Brexit and trying to give tax cuts to their rich mates.

"Now when faced with the damage, rather than protecting people and services, they’ve chosen to hammer ordinary households and make us pay the price of their incompetence.

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“Inflation has already wiped £1.7 billion off the value of the Scottish budget since the start of the year, with the Tories refusing to increase funding to compensate.

“Meanwhile big oil companies like Shell are making over £100 million profit a day and not paying a penny to the loophole-laden windfall tax.

“It doesn’t need to be like this. It’s the cost of a disgraceful and reactionary Tory government that Scotland has consistently opposed. With the economic powers of independence we could make different choices.”