National Insurance Contributions (Reduction in Rates) Bill - Second Reading

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords am 4:29 pm ar 12 Rhagfyr 2023.

Danfonwch hysbysiad imi am ddadleuon fel hyn

Photo of Baroness Vere of Norbiton Baroness Vere of Norbiton The Parliamentary Secretary, HM Treasury 4:29, 12 Rhagfyr 2023

I suspect that we are now moving into an area of debate where is not appropriate to go today, because there is business still to come in the House; I know that my noble friend is desperately waiting to get up.

I go back to the point made by the noble Baroness, Lady Primarolo. Obviously, the balance of the national insurance fund is monitored closely. The most recent report from the Government Actuary’s Department—GAD—forecast that the fund will be able to self-finance for at least the next five years. But, of course, the Treasury has the ability to top up the NIF from the consolidated fund when needed. Indeed, this has been done in the past—it was routinely done in the 1990s—so it is not right to say that the cut in NICs puts any pressure at all on any payment to the NHS or otherwise; that is set independently from the national insurance fund.