On 5 December 2013, the Chancellor George Osborne delivered his Autumn Statement. It contained the following HR-related announcements:
- Apprenticeships: The Government is investing £40m into a new apprenticeship initiative, which will allow companies to plan and manage training for their own apprentices and claim back Government subsidies. This will replace the existing system, which forces small firms to work with prescribed training providers. Under the new rules, employers will be able to claim back the cost of training new apprentices from HMRC, although the delivery method is still under consideration.
- An increase in the state pension age from 65 to 68 is to be brought forward from the current date of 2046 to the mid-2030s. Further, the state pension age is likely to increase to 69 by the late 2040s.
- Increased support for employee ownership by providing additional funding.