Boris Johnson hints Tories are planning big changes to National Insurance

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Boris Johnson has hinted the Tories are planning a big cut in National Insurance (NI) for low-paid workers when they unveil their General Election manifesto.

The Prime Minister appeared to blurt out the plan to raise the threshold at which workers start paying NI from £8,628 a year to £12,000, during a campaign visit to Teesside.

Boris Johnson has hinted the Tories are planning a big cut in National Insurance (NI) for low-paid workers when they unveil their General Election manifesto.

Boris Johnson has hinted the Tories are planning a big cut in National Insurance (NI) for low-paid workers when they unveil their General Election manifesto.

Speaking during a question-and-answer session with staff at an engineering plant in Middlesbrough, he said the Conservatives were committed to a policy of "low tax for... working people".

He went on: "If you look at what we're doing and what I've said in the last few days, we are going to be cutting National Insurance up to £12,000, we are going to be making sure that we cut business rates for small businesses.

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"We are cutting tax for working people."

Mr Johnson originally raised the idea of upping the threshold for NI contributions during the Conservative leadership contest last summer - although at that stage he did not put a figure on it.

The Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) calculated that for each £1,000 that it was raised, 600,000 workers would be lifted out of NI altogether.

If just employee and self-employed thresholds were lifted the cost to the Exchequer would be £3 billion a year rising to £4.5 billion if the employer threshold was raised as well.

To raise the threshold to £12,500 - as Mr Johnson's then leadership rival Dominic Raab was proposing - was put at £11 billion, rising to £17 billion if the employer threshold was included.

The IFS said that 2.4 million workers would be taken out of NI.

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