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Budget analysis: VAT

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The Chancellor’s Budget Statement announced the removal of VAT loopholes and anomalies. Notable among the changes are that all hot food will be standard rated, the definition of ‘premises’ for the consumption of food is expanded and zero-rating for approved alterations to residential etc listed buildings will be removed, as will zero-rating for the first sale or long lease of a substantially reconstructed residential etc building, except where reconstructed from a shell. Sports nutrition drinks, self-storage facilities, hairdressers’ chair rentals and caravans intended for holiday use will all be standard rated. The changes apply from 1 October 2012, with some transitional measures and anti-forestalling measures. Increases to the VAT registration, deregistration and fuel scale charges were announced.

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